Brazeau County

Review the Business Climate

How it's done

The business climate is the general economic environment that local businesses operate in. Reviewing and understanding the local business climate provides valuable insights about the economy, costs, risks, and incentives that may impact the success of your business. This activity will guide you to better understand the business climate in Brazeau County and help you answer the following fundamental questions.

What is the business climate in Brazeau County?

We have compiled the most important aspects of Brazeau County’s business climate as an interactive dashboard below. This dashboard provides valuable economic, resident, household, dwelling and development indicators that may influence the success of your business.

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Resident Indicator Population Growth Chart

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What costs and assistance should I know about?

Whether you have a new or existing business it is critical to be aware of costs, incentives and grants that impact your business. This dashboard provides you with a snapshot of the major costs of conducting business in Brazeau County and assistance available to Brazeau County businesses.

Compared to other provinces, businesses in Alberta enjoy a distinct advantage when it comes to corporate income taxes. With no provincial sales tax, no payroll tax, no health care premiums, lower personal income tax rates and the lowest fuel tax among provinces, Alberta continues to be a great destination to do business. Thanks to its infrastructure, strong urban growth centers, increasingly diverse economy, growing population and lucrative investment opportunities, it is clear why Alberta consistently has the highest growth amongst the provinces and territories. 

As of January 1, 2017, the general Alberta corporate income tax rate is 12%. The Alberta small business income tax rate is 2% for eligible small businesses with income up to $500,000. This is the second lowest rate across the nation and is the same as in the Province of Saskatchewan.

The combined federal/provincial corporate income tax rate in Alberta is 27% for general businesses and 14% for small businesses. A competitive corporate income tax rate is in place for manufacturers. Businesses also benefit from the fact that Alberta has no inventory tax, no machinery and equipment tax, and no payroll tax which are common in many other provinces and U.S. states. Learn more.

The Alberta government also offers additional tax credits to encourage capital investment into a wide variety of sectors.

Alberta Investor Tax Credit (AITC)

Capital Investment Tax Credit (CITC)

Growth and Diversification Act

Interactive Digital Media Tax Credit (IDMTC)

Brazeau County has some of the lowest residential and non-residential tax rates in Alberta and Canada.

Mill rates:

Residential/Farmland: .004629

Non-residential: 0.013502

Machinery & Equipment: 0.009254

Total property tax payable is calculated by multiplying the mill rate by the total assessed value of a property.

Additional tax and assessment information

The Economic Development and Planning Department manages development, subdivision and land matters in the County. The goal is to achieve orderly, economical and beneficial use of land to maintain and improve the quality of the physical environment.

Brazeau County is divided up into Land Use Districts, which designate uses. This information can be found in our current Land Use Bylaw. Land use policies help to diversify the economy by providing a long-term supply of strategically located Commercial and Industrial development sites.

Development

Brazeau County issues two types of Developments Permits:

  1. For the construction of a building – which includes but is not limited to new construction or modification to structures and moving manufactured or modular homes to a new property. This type of application is also used for dugouts, storage containers (see cans), tree removal and other uses outlined in the Land Use Bylaw.
  2. For the operation of a business – this includes but is not limited to commercial, industrial and home occupations.

Click here for Economic Development and Planning permit application forms.

Building

Before starting construction, whether new, renovations or repairs, the homeowner and/or builder should be aware that permits may be required.

Development permits can be obtained through the County office. Other permits such as building, plumbing, sewer, gas, heating and ventilation and electrical are available through agencies that administer the Safety Codes Act.

A list of accredited agencies servicing our area can be obtained by contacting the County office by phone at 780-542-2667 or by email at planning@brazeau.ab.ca.

Alberta’s wage and salary rates are competitive with the rest of Canada and with the United States. When total compensation rates are compared, Alberta provides a significant cost advantage compared to the U.S., largely because of publicly funded health care.

Detailed wage and salary information for over 400 occupations in Alberta is available here.

Alberta is one of the most affordable places in Canada to live. Here’s a look at some of the financial benefits of life in Alberta.

Higher incomes 

Families in Alberta typically enjoy a higher family income than other parts of Canada. Median total single-family household income is $141,755.  Also, 50.1% of household incomes are equal to or greater than $125,000.

Lower cost of living

Alberta offers many cost-of-living advantages:

  • No provincial health-care premiums.
  • No provincial sales tax (PST).
  • Residents in every other province pay up to 10%  in addition to the Goods and Services Tax (GST) paid by all Canadians.
  • Tax rebates and credits are available to further help with your finances.

You can compare how Canadians spend their incomes in major cities here.

Brazeau County does not maintain a business licensing service, instead businesses are regulated through the development permit process. Currently Brazeau County does not charge a fee for development permits

Every year, people from across Canada and all over the world choose Alberta as an ideal place to work and live. Alberta's high standard of living, welcoming and inclusive communities, and beautiful landscapes make it a wonderful place to call home.

Businesses in Alberta benefit from:

No provincial sales tax

No payroll tax

No inventory tax

No machinery and equipment tax

No health care premiums

Free provincial health care insurance

Lower personal income tax rates

The lowest fuel tax among provinces

Small business income tax rate of just 2%

Corporate income tax rate of 12%

Leading employers in Brazeau County and the region include:

ARC Resources

Alberta Health Services

Brazeau County

Pembina Pipeline Corporation

Town of Drayton Valley

Weyerhaeuser Canada Ltd

Wild Rose School Division

The Workers Compensation Board (WCB) of Alberta was created by government to administer the Workers Compensation Act for the province’s workers and employers. Funded by employers the WCB provides cost-effective disability and liability insurance for work related injury and illness. The WCB compensates workers for lost income and coordinates the health care and other services that may be required to recover from a work-related injury.

Learn More: Workers’ Compensation Board of Alberta

Workers Compensation
Average Cost for All Manufacuring (per $100 Payroll) (Per $100 of insurable earnings) $0.24 - $2.94
Average Rate for Office Workers (Per $100 of insurable earnings) $0.13 - $0.25
Maximum Weekly Benefit (90% of maximum insurable earnings $98,700) $1,225.61

Source: WCB rates by sector and industry

The Canadian Revenue Agency (CRA) is the governing federal body for all legislation related to employment insurance (EI) in Canada. Businesses must deduct employment insurance from an employee’s insurable earnings if that employee is in insurable employment during the year. Insurable employment includes most employment in Canada under a contract of service (employer – employee relationship). There is no age limit for deducting EI premiums.

Learn More: Canada Revenue Agency, Employment Insurance for Employers

Employment Insurance
Taxable Base Annual maximum insurable earnings $51,300.00
Rate % Employer contribution rate 2.282%
Average Among Existing Employers Annual maximum employer contribution $1,170.67

Source: Payworks Payroll Legislation

How do I use this information?

Having access to business climate statistics and information is one thing, but it's quite another to use data effectively and in a way that will benefit your business. This next section will help you do just that. Learn how to use this information to make better business decisions.

Monitor the local business climate

On-going assessment of the business climate is an essential part of operating a competitive business. In any business climate, there are numerous factors outside your control that will impact your business, both positively and negatively. The health of the economy impacts all businesses, but small businesses usually feel the effect of economic changes faster than big businesses. Improvements in the economy typically provide a rapid increase in new opportunities for small businesses, while an economic downturn can have a significant and prolonged negative impact.

Unfortunately, you can’t influence the economy, but you can monitor the business climate indicators provided above and then take the necessary actions to minimise risks to your business. Staying up to date with the business climate can also help you identify new opportunities that your business can take advantage of.

Know your costs

All industries are unique and incur different types of costs when starting or operating. Understanding these costs is essential when it comes to setting prices, budgeting and planning for growth or downturns. We’ve provided some of the local costs associated with taxes, development and labour that often get overlooked by businesses. There may be other municipal and provincial costs that apply to your business so we encourage you to contact us to find out more.

Where can I learn more about the business climate?

While we are providing you with a range of valuable information about the business climate, the fact is that there's much more available. In this section we provide you with links to other websites that will supplement our information and help to keep your finger on the pulse.

There may also be other municipal and provincial costs that apply to your business so we encourage you to contact us to find out more.

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Contact us

Brazeau County
Tel: 780-542-7777, Fax: 780-542-7770
Box 77, 7401 Twp Rd 494, Drayton Valley, AB, T7A 1R1