News and Insights

Status of the HST in British Columbia

Tax Development May 19, 2011

British Columba Minister of Finance Kevin Falcon recently introduced an information campaign geared towards promoting discussion and inviting British Columbians to seek out information and resolve existing confusion about the Harmonized Sales Tax (HST).  His campaign includes an information website, which was designed to provide voters with relevant information in order for them to decide for themselves regarding the future of the HST in British Columbia.    

The website includes:  

  • an independent panel released report, “HST or PST/GST? It’s Your Decision”, that examines the positives and negatives of the HST and the PST/GST sales tax systems based on their impact on families, businesses, the economy, and the Provincial Government;
  • information and an invitation for British Columbians to take part in a series of 11 public forums being held in 10 communities before the referendum on the HST;
  • information on recent tele-town halls and online consultations involving residents from all parts of the province and their feedback on how the HST could be fixed; an opportunity for voters to test their knowledge of the HST; and
  • key dates on the HST referendum calendar.  

British Columbians will be voting in a mail-in referendum on the HST.  Ballots will be mailed in June and must be returned to Elections BC or a Service BC office by 4:30 p.m. on Friday, July 22, 2011.