Dan Melanson wants 'tax-free' zones for new Sudbury firms

One of Sudbury's mayoral candidates wants to create a "tax free zone" to attract new industry to the city.
Greater Sudbury mayoral candidate Dan Melanson has worked in the aviation industry for several decades, and says his connections would help him bring in businesses. Another way Melanson wants to attract new businesses is to create a "tax free zone" incentive. (Hilary Duff/CBC)

One of Sudbury's mayoral candidates wants to create a "tax free zone" to attract new industry to the city.

The incentive would be for industries that aren't already in Sudbury, such as the aerospace manufacturing sector.

As part of the tax free zone, the city would waive property taxes to encourage new businesses to set up, Melanson said.

“If you really want to jump-start it, the tax free zone would be a very big part of making that a success a lot quicker, but this is do-able without the tax free zones."

Melanson said there are currently no tax free zones in Ontario, but they are in place in Quebec and PEI.

The idea of a tax free zone in Sudbury was pitched by the provincial government-of-the-day back in 2003, but it didn't carry through with the plan.

Today's announcement is the first plank of Melanson's economic development platform.

He made the announcement at a hangar at the Sudbury airport.

Melanson said he's not looking to have companies build entire aircraft here, but instead to buy parts and materials manufactured in the city.

An example would be stainless steel from the Walden Industrial Park.

Melanson, who has worked in the aviation industry for several decades, said his connections would help him bring in businesses.

He said he plans to talk in coming weeks about what other industries he'd like to bring to Sudbury.

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