Today, provincial New Democrat leader Carole James encouraged supporters to sign a party-sponsored petition demanding the government "scrap plans to implement the HST in 2010." For those keeping count, that petition comes eight days after the Campbell administration announced those plans and six days after 24 hours's columnist Bill Tieleman launched his NO BC HST facebook group. The following is a complete copy of the email sent to New Democrat "Council Delegates, Provincial Presidents, Provincial Executive Members, (and) Labour Communications" informing them of that petition drive.
From: Elsie Smith
Sent: July-31-09 11:26 AM
Subject: Launching HST campaign today
To Council Delegates, Provincial Presidents, Provincial Executive Members, Labour Communications
We're launching an on line campaign to oppose the proposed HST today.
The petition is located at www.bcndp.ca/stophst
The following message from Carole James is going out to the membership list and activists this morning.
It's hot out there, and I'm not talking about the record-breaking temperatures in BC. Everywhere I go people are stopping me in the street to tell me how upset they are about recent developments.
How many of you remember the BC Liberals promising to run a big deficit while making deep cuts to health, education and other public services?
And how many of you remember them promising to impose a $4 billion sales tax on everything from haircuts to funerals to movie tickets to airfare?
I don't remember it either.
That's because they chose not to tell us the truth.
Just weeks after an election where they promised the deficit would be no larger than $495 million, they'd protect health and education funding, and they WOULD NOT impose a new Harmonized Sales Tax "“ they're doing the opposite.
The HST alone is going to cost British Columbians "“ you "“ a lot of money, just when families need a break.
When it comes into effect in 2010, you'll be paying a lot more for vitamins, food, meals at restaurants, funerals, real estate, theatre tickets, renovations, school supplies, bicycles and more.
It's a regressive tax that makes it harder for families to make ends meet.
And it's going to kill jobs and hurt small businesses just when the BC economy needs a break.
It's another broken promise from a government that is more arrogant and untrustworthy than ever.
Gordon Campbell didn't tell us the truth. He didn't consult with the public. He simply hasn't got a mandate to impose a tax that will cost consumers $4 billion over three years.
The HST will take effect on July 1, 2010. That gives us less than one year to stop it.
Here's how we start: sign my on line petition today.
In the weeks to come, I'll be doing everything I can to hold Campbell accountable for this broken promise "“ and his broken promises about the deficit and funding for important services like health and education.
In the meantime, please take a few seconds to click this link and add your name. If enough British Columbians speak out we can stop the HST.
For years, governments of all stripes in BC have recognized the need to encourage environmentally responsible actions by giving tax breaks on bicycles and energy conservation equipment like insulation and solar power equipment.
But not this government. The BC Liberals want to wipe that out that legacy on July 1, 2010.
Let's not let them get away with it. Please sign the petition today.
Leader, BC NDP