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How does the rebate program work?

Click here for information.

Who is eligible for this rebate?

As of Nov. 30, 2022 the rebate program will expand to those homes and businesses that currently don’t have access to high-speed internet. This includes those in a current project area, not yet complete.

The rebate remains available to the approximate 3,700 homes and businesses for which no feasible wired or wireless internet solution has been found as well as addresses previously identified as not receiving high-speed access until after the end of 2023.

You can check eligibility here.

If eligible, and you are interested in taking part in the program, you will first need to purchase the hardware from a qualified satellite internet provider. Their high-speed satellite product must meet or exceed CRTC minimum speed targets of 50 Mbps download/10 Mbps.

Click here to learn more about how the program works.

What type of dwelling or business is eligible?

Any type of dwelling or business is eligible if located at an eligible address that has a civic number assigned to it.

What can the rebate be used for?

The rebate will cover the one-time costs for eligible homes and businesses to set-up satellite internet, including hardware, taxes, shipping and installation, up to a maximum of $1,000.

Why offer this now?

The goal is to reach as close to 100% of Nova Scotians as possible with access to reliable, quality internet service. Satellite internet was identified as an option to reach locations where no feasible wired or wireless internet solution has been found.

Why only satellite when I know other providers offer service nearby?

The feasibility of providing access to high-speed internet services involves more than proximity to network infrastructure. The terrain, supporting infrastructure and prevalence of road, rail and water crossings in the area all play a significant role in feasibility. There are approximately 3,700 homes and businesses which won't be reached with a viable wired or wireless solution.

Are there other qualified satellite options?

Currently, Starlink has indicated that they can meet or exceed these minimum speeds. We would encourage you to reach out to the provider to determine which product best suits your needs.

Any other qualified provider(s) that can meet the minimum CRTC speeds could also be eligible.

I’m in the Cumberland/Colchester project with Xplore and do not have high-speed internet yet? Why are we not automatically eligible for the rebate?

This project with Xplore is designed to reach all underserved locations, approximately 16,000 homes and businesses in Cumberland and Colchester counties through a mix of wired and fixed wireless services.

Through acceleration efforts during COVID-19, the fixed wireless work is complete and available. We realize there may be some locations that are more difficult to reach (eg. terrain etc.). If your address is one of these locations, please contact us at satellite@buildns.ca or 1-800-298-2854 and we will review with our contacts at Xplore to look for solutions.

Xplore is currently rolling out a hybrid fibre project to certain areas within the counties as part of expansion plans. You can check to see if fibre is available at your location at www.xplore.ca

What happens when someone receives a rebate and then moves? Is the location put back on the list?

Build Nova Scotia and Service Nova Scotia can determine if a property is back on the market and if the address would be eligible again for a rebate.

Why offer this program?

The goal is to reach as close to 100% of Nova Scotians as possible with access to reliable, quality internet service.

Build Nova Scotia’s work to provide high-speed internet service throughout Nova Scotia is grounded in the use of a variety of technologies, including satellite, wireless and wired internet services.

Satellite internet was identified as an option to reach locations where no feasible wired or wireless internet solution has been found and has since expanded to provide an interim solution for those who do not have access to high-speed internet as of Nov. 30/22.

Current projects through the Internet for Nova Scotia Initiative as well as Pictou’s independent project, continue.

I’m in a current internet project area. Do you have any updated estimated completion dates?

We are working with our provider partners on some updates estimated timelines and will post to the relevant project pages as available.

What if I take advantage of the rebate program and then decide to move to fibre/wired once my project area is complete?

For those in a project area with a wired solution currently underway, once access is available, you can decide to switch from satellite to the wired service. Focus remains to continue to advance projects wherever possible.

What if I am a non-Canadian resident but my address is showing as eligible?

If you are a non-Canadian resident and the address is showing as eligible, you would be eligible for the rebate program. Please include a Social Security Number (or alternate depending on your country of origin), where it asks for a Social Insurance Number. If you have any questions, please contact Build Nova Scotia at 1-800-298-2854 or satellite@buildns.ca

Are there other qualified satellite options?

Other qualified provider(s) that can meet the minimum CRTC speeds could also be eligible.

I have high-speed internet now through the project, but I purchased Starlink (or satellite) before access was available. Am I eligible?

Currently, the rebate program is not retroactive to those who have access to high-speed internet. It is designed to support those who do not currently have access or will not be reached through wired or wireless solutions.

Where is the money coming from?

The Satellite Internet Service Rebate is available through a $8.5M investment from the Province of Nova Scotia to the Nova Scotia Internet Funding Trust.

Is this taking investment taking away from the overall Internet for Nova Scotia Initiative of $193M?

No, an additional $8.5M was provided for the Satellite Internet Service Rebate. A change in the Trust indenture allows this rebate program to take place.

Why do you require a Social Insurance Number (SIN?

The independent Nova Scotia Internet Funding Trust is the issuer of the rebates who must disclose to the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) any distribution of capital property to beneficiaries, including the name and tax identification number of the beneficiary, and a description of the property.

Is my rebate taxable?

The satellite rebate is through the independent Nova Scotia Internet Funding Trust. In terms of potential taxes on the rebate, essentially:

If the rebate is received by the beneficiaries(s) of a trust (in this case Nova Scotia Internet Funding Trust), operating in a business capacity, it is deemed to be taxable.

Individuals receiving a rebate in the course of solely personal use, should not be subject to income tax on the receipt (if they are not carrying on a business, earning income from property, or from an office or employment, it is not otherwise taxable unless expressly outlined in the Act below). If the individual uses the internet service for multiple purposes (e.g., rental of a property), they would be subject to the same considerations as beneficiaries carrying on a business, as noted above.

Please refer to the full description below CRA. If you have further inquiries, we would encourage you to contact CRA or a financial advisor.

Tax Consequences of Receipt of Payments

Beneficiaries carrying on a business

Generally, the recipient of government funding is considered a taxable event and any funding is normally included in income and taxed under paragraph 12(1)(x) of the Act:

“any particular amount (other than a prescribed amount) received by the taxpayer in the year, in the (A) in the course of earning income from a business or property...”

Further, by way of 12(2.1) of the Act, where the assistance of this nature (an inducement) is received by the beneficiaries(s) of a trust operating in a business capacity, it is deemed to be taxable.

Accordingly, the receipt of the rebate by a taxpayer operating a business, will be subject to tax on the receipt of the amount.

Beneficiaries operating in a personal capacity
Section 3 of the Act lays out specific criteria for what is considered income under the Act. For example, employment income, rental income, or income from other property is considered taxable income.

Where an individual has received an amount not in the course of carrying on a business, earning income from property, or from an office or employment, it is not otherwise taxable unless expressly outlined in the Act. Therefore, individuals receiving a rebate in the course of solely personal use, should not be subject to income tax on the receipt. In the event the individual uses the internet service for multiple purposes (e.g., rental of a property), they would be subject to the same considerations as beneficiaries carrying on a business, as noted above.

Generally, why do you require personal information for the application?

Personal information on the Satellite Rebate Service Program application form is collected by Build Nova Scotia under the authority of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FOIPOP).

We collect:

  • Your name
  • Mailing address
  • Phone number
  • Email address
  • Physical address where the service is connected
  • Which service provider you have chosen
  • Proof of purchase documentation
  • Social Insurance Number
  • Date of Birth

We collect and use this information to process your application, determine your eligibility for the rebate, to communicate with you regarding your application, to issue payment, and to file required reporting on rebates issued to the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA). To determine eligibility, it is necessary to disclose your name, address where the service is connected and service provider information to the Nova Scotia Internet Funding Trust via Build Nova Scotia for them to review and approve your application.

To process your payment, it is necessary to disclose your name and mailing address to McInnes Cooper which will be processing payments on behalf of the Nova Scotia Internet Funding Trust. Your name, the amount awarded, your social insurance number, and date of birth will be disclosed to the Canada Revenue Agency as the Nova Scotia Internet Funding Trust is required to report distributions from the Trust. Your personal information will only be used or disclosed for another purpose if we are authorized by law to do so or if we obtain your express consent.

To read more about how government respects your privacy when interacting with our online services review our full Privacy Statement. For questions about how your personal information is handled in relation to this program, you may contact us at satellite@buildns.ca or 1-800-298-2854.

Please Note:

The Nova Scotia Internet Funding Trust and Build Nova Scotia are offering a rebate program to the consumer on the up-front costs to acquire the satellite service provided they meet or exceed the CRTC minimum speed requirements of 50mbps download / 10mbps upload. This is not a contracted project with any provider. Any product specific questions are to be directed to the satellite service provider.

Have questions? Need more information?

Please use the form below to reach out to our team. If you are reaching out about your location, please include your full address, community and postal code.

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