March 9, 2017 (STLRealEstate.News) Not a news headline many expect to see today, there is legislation going through Congress right now that proposes letting Canadian snowbirds stay an additional 2-months in their Southern destinations for increased spending and tourism boosts. The bill is a bipartisan one, and it was introduced in the House of Representatives last month. It would open the door wider to one immigration group in particular: older Canadians who winter south of the border.
Called The Promoting Tourism to Enhance our Economy Act, the bill aims to let our neighbors to the north, over the age of 55 who own or rent property in the States, stay there an extra two months out of the year, on top of the 180 days allowed presently. The idea behind the legislation, say both the Democratic and Republican sponsors is that Canadians would spend more time in the United States than they do in their native land, spending their money in the American economy.
Rep. Yed Yoho of Florida stated in an interview, “We want people with good standing to come here and stay as long as they care. We come from similar backgrounds, we believe in the same thing. There’s no assimilation necessary. The morals and mores we have are pretty much the same as they have, so it’s a smooth and easy transition.”
Research director at the Canadian Snowbird Association, Evan Rachovsky, said that Canadians own more than 500,000 properties in Florida alone, while 700,000 of them spend at least 31 days at a time in that state every year. Rachovsky went on to state that although there’s clearly a lot of press covering immigration lately, this piece of legislation is more of a job’s bill, aimed to stimulate the American economy.
As the law stands now, Canadians can spend no more than 180-days here per year.