Vol. 149, No. 12 — June 17, 2015
SOR/2015-120 May 29, 2015
CANADA STUDENT FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE ACT
Regulations Amending the Canada Student Financial Assistance Regulations
P.C. 2015-632 May 28, 2015
His Excellency the Governor General in Council, on the recommendation of the Minister of Employment and Social Development, pursuant to section 15 (see footnote a) of the Canada Student Financial Assistance Act (see footnote b), makes the annexed Regulations Amending the Canada Student Financial Assistance Regulations.
REGULATIONS AMENDING THE CANADA STUDENT FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE REGULATIONS
1. Schedule 3 to the Canada Student Financial Assistance Regulations (see footnote 1) is replaced by the Schedule 3 set out in the schedule to these Regulations.
COMING INTO FORCE
2. These Regulations come into force on August 1, 2015.
(Paragraphs 14.3(b), 38(1)(d), 38.1(1)(e), 38.2(1)(f), 40.02(1)(d) and 40.021(1)(d))
Low-income Thresholds, 2014 ($)
(number of persons)
|7 or more||64,724||55,468||55,140||65,173||63,207||55,507||56,015||65,107||55,851||64,472|
Middle-income Thresholds, 2014 ($)
(number of persons)
|7 or more||108,104||94,681||82,263||94,812||111,634||91,055||93,610||107,266||86,784||98,793|
REGULATORY IMPACT ANALYSIS STATEMENT
(This statement is not part of the Regulations.)
The low-income (LI) and middle-income (MI) thresholds set out in Schedule 3 to the Canada Student Financial Assistance Regulations (the Regulations) are used to determine eligibility based on family income, family size and province or territory of residence for Canada Student Grants (CSG) and Part-time Canada Student Loans (PT-CSL) as follows:
- LI thresholds are used to determine eligibility for the CSG for Students from Low-income Families (CSG-LI), CSG for Students with Dependants (CSG-DEP), CSG for Part-time Studies (CGS-PT) and CSG for Part-time Students with Dependants (CSG-PTDEP).
- MI thresholds are used to determine eligibility for the CSG for Students from Middle-income Families (CSG-MI) and PT-CSLs.
Each year, the LI and MI thresholds are adjusted according to inflation to ensure that students remain eligible for CSGs and PT-CSLs in the subsequent academic year. Without these annual adjustments, the real value of the LI and MI thresholds would decrease, and eligibility for CSGs and PT-CSLs would become more restrictive. If the thresholds are not adjusted, approximately 900 students in the 2015–2016 academic year would be affected in the following ways:
- students who qualified for CSGs in previous years may find themselves ineligible in the 2015–2016 academic year;
- to replace grant funding, students may seek additional loans and accumulate higher Canada Student Loan (CSL) debt;
- the unmet financial need may increase for those students who are at the maximum CSL funding limit ($210/week); and
- some part-time students may no longer qualify for a PT-CSL, and may be unable to pursue post-secondary studies.
The Government of Canada provides CSLs and CSGs to improve access to post-secondary education through the provision of repayable and non-repayable financial assistance to eligible post-secondary students. Introduced in August 2009, CSGs were a Budget 2008 initiative aimed at improving access to post-secondary education by providing more effective grant funding than the previous mix of Canada Study Grants, Canada Access Grants, and Canada Millennium Scholarship Grants that were available to CSL recipients. Participating provinces (all provinces except Quebec) and one territory (Yukon), as well as the private sector service provider D+H, administer CSLs and CSGs.
A student is eligible for one or more of the following CSGs if their family income is below the LI thresholds, corresponding to his/her family size and province or territory of residence:
- the CSG-LI, which provide qualified students with $250 in non-repayable assistance per month of full-time study;
- the CSG-DEP, which provides qualifying students with $200 in non-repayable assistance per dependant (under the age of 12) per month of full-time study;
- the CGS-PT, which provides up to $1,200 in non-repayable assistance per loan year (August 1 to July 31); and
- the CSG-PTDEP, which provides between $40 and $60 in non-repayable assistance per week of part-time study, up to a maximum of $1,920 per loan year.
A student is eligible for a CSG-MI if their family income falls between the LI and MI thresholds, corresponding to his/her family size and province or territory of residence. The CSG-MI provides qualified students with $100 in non-repayable assistance per month of full-time study.
Finally, a student is eligible for a PT-CSL if their family income is below the MI thresholds, corresponding to his/her family size and province or territory of residence. Part-time students may borrow up to a maximum of $10,000 in PT-CSLs.
The objective of this amendment is to ensure that CSGs and PT-CSLs continue to target students from LI and MI families. The amendment will also ensure that the LI and MI thresholds align with inflation so that CSGs and PT-CSLs remain available to LI and MI students to assist with the cost of their post-secondary education.
The amendment will increase the LI and MI thresholds set out in Schedule 3 to the Regulations to reflect growth in the relevant provincial Consumer Price Indices (CPI) between 2013 and 2014 (a period during which the overall Canadian CPI grew by 2%).
The “One-for-One” Rule does not apply to this proposal, as there is no change in administrative costs to business.
Small business lens
The small business lens does not apply to this proposal, as there are no costs to small business.
Provincial and territorial participants, as well as student and educational stakeholder groups, were consulted during the development and implementation of the CSGs in 2008 and 2009. These partners and stakeholder groups are supportive of the use of the CPI as a proxy to keep LI and MI thresholds up to date.
The amendment ensures that eligibility for CSGs and PT-CSLs takes into account inflation, ensuring that LI and MI students continue to have access to grants, and that part-time students retain access to PT-CSLs to support their pursuit of post-secondary education.
Although the amendment does not impact the value of individual grants and loans, approximately 900 students are expected to be impacted by the amendment, through retained eligibility, with an estimated cost to the federal government of $745,000 for the 2015–2016 academic year.
Implementation, enforcement and service standards
The amendment will come into force on August 1, 2015, in time for the 2015–2016 academic year. Provincial and territorial participants will be made aware of the amended LI and MI thresholds prior to their coming into force to ensure that these thresholds are considered in their analysis of student financial needs. Given that the amendments are routine in nature, no incremental implementation, enforcement or service standard activities are anticipated.
Acting Senior Director
Canada Student Loans Program
Employment and Social Development Canada
200 Montcalm Street, Tower II, 1st Floor