OTTAWA—Backtracking on controversial reforms, Finance Minister Bill Morneau announced that small businesses would be allowed to keep certain tax advantages, provided they survive one night in a haunted house.
“To help small businesses remain competitive, we are introducing a program that allows self-incorporated professionals to keep their tax bills low,” Morneau told reporters while holding a flashlight under his chin. “To qualify, they must stay overnight in my late uncle Beauregard’s mansion atop Weeping Widow Hill.”
The 9000 square foot home has sat empty ever since the reclusive millionaire mysteriously vanished in 2011. According to local legend, Beauregard summoned ‘Creeping Thinges’ from the spirit realm with which to split his taxable income. No one has seen and lived to tell about them, but visitors say they often hear noises from the cellar late at night.
“Successful applicants will remain in the house from sundown to sunrise,” Morneau explained. “Some say my uncle diverted profits into a hoard of cursed emeralds still hidden somewhere on the estate. Whoever finds it may add it to their business as a passive investment. If. They. Dare.”
Opposition parties and business associations were quick to criticize the new measure. In a press release, the Canadian Medical Association condemned the government’s hypocrisy in keeping income sprinkling to the undead or reanimated as a secret loophole for the well-connected.