HST referendum rejected greed, not tax itself

Re: HST decision a costly one, Letters, Aug. 30.

To the Editor,

Re: HST decision a costly one, Letters, Aug. 30.

It is always interesting to read people’s point of view, even when you do not agree. There are a couple things that I think we should remember about the HST.

The Conservative government did not just decide one day to give poor old British Columbia a few billion dollars for nothing. They only gave us a share of the extra tax revenue that knew they would collect under HST.

There are many things that in the past we only paid PST on that now the federal government gets five per cent GST on. A good example is used cars and boats. The federal government got to increase the amount of taxes and the provincial government got all the blame.

There is talk that B.C. will now have to borrow to pay back the money the federal government gave us. The truth is the B.C. government did not have the money in the first place, so they are only borrowing now what they would have borrowed two years ago without HST.

They say we are going to be losing thousands of jobs without the HST as “corporations start shifting their operations to more friendly tax areas” and yet our unemployment rate has increased to 16 per cent under the HST.

Where are all the new jobs and operations that the HST was to create in Nanaimo? Do you see banks and oil companies creating jobs? They say business is not reinvesting at present, but waiting out the recession to find the cheapest place to reinvest.

It is true that collecting just one tax instead of two makes it easier and save business money. The problem is that if it was done as revenue-neutral by both the B.C and federal governments, there would not have been a problem.

Both governments caused the problem by using the HST to increase the tax burden on the working people, while reducing the taxes for the business and increasing government revenue at the same time.

It was the greed, not the HST, that the people could not swallow.

Terrance Wagstaff

Nanaimo