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NEWS RELEASE · 29th June 2010
BC NDP Caucus
When the HST is implemented July 1, the average household will pay $521 more per year according to Statistics Canada. Consumer confidence will be shaken and many industries and economic sectors will take a blow to their bottom line.

Monthly Bills

· Basic phone and TV cable service will be subject to a seven-per-cent increase. Regular expenses such as taxi fares, parking fees, newspapers, coffee and haircuts will also go up.

· Maintenance costs such as janitorial services, window washing and landscaping will go up under the HST, forcing strata fees and rents to increase.

Home Maintenance

· Families will face difficult choices when the cost for home repairs increases dramatically by seven per cent. As a result, plumbers, roofers, and renovators could see significantly
less business.

· Many predict that the HST will drive a lot of repairs and renovations underground, contributing to tax evasion and poorer building standards while at the same time hurting honest contractors.

New Homes

· Developers worry about the increase to the cost of a new home under the HST, and feel it could have a crippling effect on the industry in B.C.

Camping and Eco-tourism

· According to the Wilderness Tourism Association of B.C., their industry could take a $50 million hit to revenue next year and many businesses could be dealt a fatal blow.

· For families seeking a more affordable way to spend holidays, the HST is being added onto camping fees. In addition to other fee increases by the B.C. Liberals, campers will see costs increase in some parks by as much as 100 per cent from last year

Restaurants

· The B.C. Restaurant and Foodservices Association said the HST could cost the industry $750 million in lost revenue, or about $50,000 per restaurant. Many businesses could close and many jobs could disappear.

Tourism

· The Council of Tourism Operators said over 10,000 jobs from the tourism sector could be lost after the HST is implemented.

Child care

· The HST will significantly increase operating expenses such as commercial leases for many child care providers, who are not eligible for any rebates or input tax credits. Those costs will be passed on to parents through even higher child care fees.

Arts and Entertainment

· Having fun will cost British Columbians much more under the HST. Whether you are chartering a fishing trip, golfing, attending a festival, going to the museum, the art gallery or an amusement park, British Columbians will be paying seven per cent more.

· Arts organizations, already reeling from drastic B.C. Liberal funding cuts, will be further devastated when theatre, movie and concert ticket prices increase by seven per cent. Many organizations could call the final curtain, and it could take many years for the sector to recover from the impact of B.C. Liberal policies.

Weddings and Funerals

· Catering, wedding planners, hair and makeup services and more wedding expenses will go up with the HST, forcing some new couples to cut services. Funerals will also increase under the HST, forcing grieving families to make difficult choices about services for their loved ones.

Health


· Many services and items not covered by medicare will increase under the HST, including acupuncture, massage therapy, naturopathy, and dietary supplements. Providers and retailers will see a drop in revenue after they are forced to either make clients pay more in taxes or soak up the cost.

Sports and Recreation

· Staying fit will cost British Columbians more under the HST. Bicycles, gym memberships, hockey rink rentals, fitness trainers and sports training will all increase in cost by seven per cent.

· Player fees for sports will increase due to the application of the HST on facility rentals such as soccer fields and hockey rinks. Some families may be forced to have their child sit out if the fees increase beyond their means.

Retailers

· A recent survey of B.C. and Ontario retailers found 48 per cent of small businesses feel the HST will be harmful to their businesses, while only 5 per cent feel it will help. The Retail Association of B.C. says that small retailers are particularly disadvantaged by the HST.

Retirement

· Private saving for retirement will go up when fees for professionally managed investment portfolios are subject to an additional seven per cent tax. That means mutual funds, wrap accounts, hedge funds, segregated funds, charitable trusts and even passively managed index funds and exchange-traded funds – the basics of most retirement portfolios – will see increased fees.
Carole James and the New Democrats will continue to hold the B.C. Liberals to account for their HST doublecross and the $1.9 billion tax shift on to the backs of consumers.