Dix wants PST back where it was

NDP leader Adrian Dix is flanked by MLA Carole James

NDP leader Adrian Dix brought his low-key “stop the HST” tour to a Victoria coffee shop Wednesday, calling for people to vote yes in the upcoming referendum on the harmonized sales tax.

Flanked by Vancouver Island MLAs, a local naturopath and a theatre manager, Dix said he and other NDP members will ask the public to vote for a return to the seven-per-cent provincial sales tax. He’s counting on voters to be reminded of the HST’s extra consumer costs whenever they buy a coffee and muffin.

“My job is just to go around and talk to people, to knock on doors and to put forward the very compelling case that we should return to the PST, and we should get rid of the HST,” Dix told reporters in his second stop of the tour.

Dix contrasted the NDP’s effort, which has no specific budget, to the B.C. Liberal government’s $5 million advertising campaign and the unknown spending of the businesses promoting the HST under the Smart Tax Alliance label. The B.C. government’s “stick man” ad campaign began as neutral information, but now promotes the promise to lower the HST rate to 10 per cent over three years.

Naturopath Pamela Hutchison said the provincial portion of HST extended to vitamins and alternative therapies has reduced demand for them. Ian Case, manager of Intrepid Theatre, said the extra seven-per-cent tax on tickets is depressing sales for performing arts events.

Tuesday’s kickoff event in Burnaby was held in a family kitchen, to highlight the independent estimate that a family with $100,000 income pays an average of $1,000 a year more, as long as the HST remains at 12 per cent.

Elections BC is sending out more than three million ballots starting next week for the mail-in referendum, with a target of having them all delivered by June 24. They must be returned by July 22 to be counted.

Just Posted

Trapped Vancouver Island crash survivor celebrates second chance at life

“Life is good now. It’s good to be alive.”

Habitat for Humanity hands over keys to Campbell River families

Organization will also hold key ceremony for project in Courtenay on Friday

Baby, it’s nasty outside: wind and rain will continue across Vancouver Island

Police warn drivers and pedestrians to use precaution during expected rain and winds

Campbell River to get safer as protective services increases OK’d

Another RCMP officer, better pay for auxiliary firefighters and more manpower at No.2 hall in 2020

Walkway at new boat ramp closed due to storm damage

Newly-constructed walkway fails its first test

VIDEO: ‘I won’t stop’ – local surfer hits the stormy seas of Stories Beach in Campbell River

Surfing community is growing in Campbell River, says Scotty Hewett

Sissons scores OT winner as Predators beat Canucks 4-3

VIDEO: Vancouver battles back to earn single point in Nashville

Lions announce seven members of coaching staff not coming back for 2019

The operational moves come two days after the Lions announced DeVone Claybrooks as the team’s new head coach

VIDEO: Kitten rescued from under school bus in Duncan

School staff have affectionately called kitten “Axle”

$12K awarded to atheist family who oppose Christmas, Hanukkah in B.C. classroom

Gary Mangel,May Yasue said holidays, Remembrance Day and Valentine’s Day not appropriate in preschool

Coach accused of sexual assault says apology letter was misinterpreted

Dave Brubaker has pleaded not guilty to one count of sexual assault and one count of invitation to sexual touching

Give the gift of nature this holiday season

Please don’t be mad, but I bought you a moose

Aboriginal poet faces backlash for calling out NHL-themed totem poles

Rebecca Thomas says she received backlash for asking a drugstore chain to remove NHL merchandise

No plans yet for free WiFi on BC Transit buses

BC Transit says they are monitoring the roll-out of free WiFi on Translink vehicles

Most Read