The First Nations Tax Commission has the overall responsibility of maintaining the integrity of First Nation taxation. Instrumental in that regard is the creation of national standards, procedures, and policies which govern how the Commission reviews and approves First Nation laws, and how the Commission approaches dispute prevention and resolution. The Commission believes it is essential that it clearly articulates the policy objectives underlying FNTC standards, procedures and policies. The Commission’s policy approach provides First Nations, taxpayers and other interested parties with its policy rationale. The Commission hopes to promote understanding and facilitate the policy development process. The policy objectives have been formulated by drawing from the First Nations Fiscal Management Act, particularly the Act’s Preamble and section 29 which lists the Commission’s purposes. The policy objectives are presented below:
1. Support First Nation Jurisdiction – The Commission will protect and support First Nation tax jurisdiction by providing certainty and preserving the integrity of the First Nation local revenue system.
2. Reconcile Interests - The Commission seeks to reconcile interests and create mutual benefits for First Nations governments and stakeholders in the First Nation tax system. To this end, the Commission seeks to achieve a First Nation tax system that prevents disputes before they arise, and effectively resolves them once they occur. The Commission advocates the use of strategies to improve taxpayer relations, and appropriate dispute resolution as an alternative to formal complaints or litigation.
3. Promote Transparency – The Commission promotes transparency and clarity in the First Nation tax system. Transparency is a cornerstone in building a First Nation tax system that is credible, sustainable and supported by taxpayers.
4. Support First Nations in Achieving Sustainable Economic Development - Stable local revenue, the infrastructure it affords, and a competitive investment climate are prerequisites for sustainable economic development. The Commission is committed to helping First Nations facilitate investments on their lands.
5. Educate and Promote Understanding – Education and promoting understanding are key ingredients in securing a healthy and sustainable First Nation property tax system. The Commission is committed to building capacity amongst First Nations to enable them to better administer their property tax administrations.
6. Promote Harmonization – The First Nation property tax system should be harmonized with its relevant provincial property tax system where possible. This creates certainty and transparency and promotes sustainable economic development.
7. Foster Administrative Efficiencies - The Commission will work to achieve an efficient and a practicable First Nation property tax system.