New option for Old Age Security

Many of us are benefiting from advances in health and fitness and as a result, Canadians are living longer.
Right here in our beautiful riding of Kelowna-Lake Country, I have had the pleasure of meeting and being inspired by several octogenarians (folks who are 80 going on 60), numerous people who have celebrated their 100th birthday, and one community member who at 106 years is still going as strong as an energizer bunny!
Living longer, more active lives is a reality that presents all kinds of choices and adjustments, from personal decisions about careers and retirement, to the need for governments to develop and amend policies and programs.
For example, people today are taking many different paths to retirement, with some seniors choosing to work longer.
To improve flexibility and choice in retirement planning, the Government of Canada announced the new voluntary deferral option for the Old Age Security (OAS) pension.
As of July 1, 2013, Canadians now have the option to voluntarily defer their OAS pension for up to five years in exchange for a higher monthly amount. For every month they delay receipt of their OAS pension, they will receive an increased monthly benefit of 0.6 percent per month, up to a maximum of 36 percent at age 70.
People can defer their OAS pension for as little as one month, or as much as 60 months. For example, if you were to turn 65 today and decided to delay receiving your OAS pension for one year, your monthly amount would increase by 7.2 percent (0.6 percent x 12 months).
People should consider their personal situations when deciding when to start receiving their OAS pension, including their financial status, life expectancy, and wants and needs. It is important to note that if people delay their OAS pension, they will not be eligible to receive the Guaranteed Income Supplement, and their spouse or common-law partner will not be eligible to receive the Allowance until their OAS pension begins.
For more information on voluntary deferral and how it may affect your retirement plans, I encourage you to visit the Government of Canada website at: www.servicecanada.gc.ca/oaschanges.
As always if you have any questions about this or any federally-related matter, don’t hesitate to contact my office at 250 470-5075 or [email protected] .
Ron Cannan is the Member of Parliament for Kelowna-Lake Country and welcomes your feedback at [email protected].  Information on local announcements and federal government programs can be found at www.cannan.ca .

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About the Author

The Honourable Ron Cannan was first elected as Member of Parliament for Kelowna-Lake Country in January, 2006. He was subsequently elected in the 2008 and 2011 federal elections. He is a member of the Conservative Caucus.

On September 13th, 2012 Ron was summoned to be a member of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada and will provide advice to the Government as a member of the Priorities and Planning Sub-Committee on Government Administration.

Ron successfully uses his experience and knowledge as a long-time Kelowna City Councillor and regional government representative to be an effective and enthusiastic champion for his riding and his constituents.

His greatest satisfaction comes from helping local organizations and citizens obtain the support they require from Ottawa. 

He is also dedicated to doing what it takes to ensure that the growing and vibrant communities in his riding continue to thrive and prosper.

He is proud of the partnership and cooperation between federal, provincial and municipal governments which have resulted in significant infrastructure projects including upgrades to Highway 97, expansion of the Kelowna International Airport, a new horticulture strategy for fruit growers, obtaining a full service passport office for Kelowna and addressing critical economic issues such as labour skills shortages.

He works closely with the local Chambers of Commerce and once a year arranges meetings for the Chamber with Cabinet Ministers and senior policy staff in Ottawa to move forward important local issues such as crime prevention and labour skills shortages.

He is also an ardent champion for important community initiatives including homelessness, mental health, women’s resources, and support of arts and culture.

On Parliament Hill, Ron has been a member of the Standing Committee on International Trade since 2006 supporting initiatives which will broaden the economic opportunities for local businesses and businesses Canada-wide.

In previous parliamentary sessions Ron has been a member of the Standing Committee for Government Operations and Estimates, Veteran’s Affairs, Human Resources and Social Development, the Scrutiny of Regulations Committee, and the Standing Committee for Fisheries and Oceans.

Ron is also involved in a variety of inter-parliamentary organizations: he is Vice Chair of the Canada-US Inter-Parliamentary Group, and a member of the Canada-Taiwan Friendship group.

As Chair of the Conservative Wine Caucus, Ron works with his colleagues across the country to promote the wine regions of Canada.  Ron tabled Motion 218(formerly Motion 601) which supports direct to consumer purchasing of Canadian wine. His motion became Bill C-311, sponsored by MP Dan Albas, seconded by Ron, which was passed into law on June 28th, 2012.

Prior to entering politics, Ron developed a diverse business background as a small business owner and had several years experience in marketing and sales management working with corporations including Coca-Cola, Costco and Corus Entertainment.

Very active in his community, Ron has been a Director for both the Central Okanagan Regional District and the Central Okanagan Hospital Board. Ron also served on the Okanagan University College Access to Training Advisory Board, the Glenmore Elementary School Parents Advisory Council, and the Kelowna Christian School Fund Raising Committee. He was co-founder of the Okanagan Volunteer Festival. Currently Ron is a member of the Sunrise Rotary Club of Kelowna and, along with his wife Cindy, was the honorary Chair of the 2012 Canadian Cancer Society Daffodil Ball.

Ron lives a family-oriented and active lifestyle with his wife Cindy. He is the proud father of three daughters and grandfather to three grandsons. His hobbies include music and sports.

The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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