QUALITY OF LIFE & TOURISM – THE GOOD TIMES SEEM TO BE ROLLING FOR CANADA & TORONTO

For the second year in a row CANADA ranks #1 in the world for being a good place to live. Says who? US News’s top 20 surveyed ‘Countries With the Best Quality of Life’. Again we’re first on the list for job security, political stability, individual freedom, environmental quality, economic stability, family friendliness, income equality, safety, well-developed public education, and public health care. Sweden was #2, Denmark #3, Norway #4, United States #17, Singapore #18, Portugal #19 and China #20.As for TORONTO, tourism has been booming. In a report just released by Tourism Toronto and the Toronto Region Board of Trade, 27.5-million visitors generated $10.3-billion in economic activity in 2018. “This is a destination with visitors as diverse as the city itself,” said Scott Beck, president of Tourism Toronto. “The visitor economy is thriving.” Tourism accounted for 70,000 full-time jobs or about 4.6% of the city’s workforce in 2018.

TORONTO IS ONE OF ONLY A FEW MAJOR CITIES WITHOUT A HOTEL TAX – FINALLY IT’S GETTING ONE

With tourism booming – up to $9-billion in 2017 – TORONTO is about to gently pluck the golden goose by imposing a 4% new tax on hotels and short-term accommodations. Initially the plan was for a 10% tax, then 6% and finally 4%.

The hotels argued against the tax, but as part of the deal they’ll no longer have to pay a marketing fee to Tourism Toronto. The expectation is that $16-million annually will come in from the new levy.