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How cutting bureaucracy boosted Manitoba’s growth

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This is Red-Tape Awareness Week, created by the Canadian Federation of Independent Business. This is the first of two columns looking at how regulatory burdens from all three levels of government impede the ability to run a successful business and hurt the country’s economy.

Throughout my time in politics, no systemic issue has been so often overlooked by governments of all stripes and levels as red tape. Despite countless reports highlighting the negative social and economic effects of ineffective policies and processes, most governments appear to believe that the best and only solution to an issue is new rules. In Manitoba, we’ve taken a different approach that is better for our economy and our citizens.

When we formed government in 2016, no one knew how many provincial rules — we call them regulatory requirements — existed, where they were or who was responsible for enforcing them. Imagine trying to operate a non-profit, start a business or manage a local government without knowing what the province says you can and cannot do.

After a year of hard work, we finally found the answer: 948,599 requirements in more than 12,000 statutes, regulations, policies and forms.

While the science is not settled on the right number of rules in a province, feedback from national red tape reduction leaders, such as the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB), municipal councillors and........

© Financial Post