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Tax credits rise on Prairie wheat, barley checkoffs

Wheat and barley growers whose money stayed in the Western Grains Research Foundation’s checkoff fund during 2011 can expect a relatively larger tax credit for their buck.

Prairie farmers — other than Alberta barley growers, who pay into a different checkoff fund — will see their WGRF checkoff money eligible for federal Scientific Research and Experimental Development (SR+ED) tax credits at rates of 84 per cent for wheat and 83 per cent for barley.

That’s up from 74 per cent for wheat and 69 per cent for barley on WGRF checkoff contributions made during 2010.

The WGRF calculates the available tax credit based on the portion of the total checkoff money going directly to support eligible research. Farmers who don’t opt out of the WGRF checkoff pay in at rates of 50 cents per tonne for barley and 30 cents per tonne for wheat.

The SR+ED tax credit is earned at a rate of 20 per cent for individuals and 35 per cent for Canadian-controlled private corporations.

So for example, if an individual Prairie farmer put $300 into the WGRF’s wheat checkoff in 2011 and did not opt out, he or she would get a federal tax credit of $50.40 ($300 x 0.84 x 0.20), the WGRF explained in a release.

If filing his or her 2011 taxes as a corporation, the same farmer would get a tax credit of $88.20 for his or her WGRF wheat checkoff.

WGRF checkoffs — for 2011, at least — are deducted from the Canadian Wheat Board’s final payments to eligible Prairie producers. †

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