On May 12, Finance Minister Kevin Falcon told reporters the government's $5 new million harmonized sales tax advertising campaign would be an "information campaign" not a "persuasion campaign." A few weeks later, the government rolled out a commercial stating the "HST reduces bureaucracy and small business costs." But, in an interview with Public Eye today, Mr. Falcon said the government isn't going to be running any commercials promoting the positives of returning to a provincial sales tax because there aren't any. So doesn't that mean the government is running a persuasion campaign? In response, the finance minister told us other ads will point out "some prices are going up too. We're not pretending in those ads that everything comes down. I think those ads are informative. And I would argue I think they're balanced." Specifically, Mr. Falcon referenced an ad that will show how a candy bar is pricier under the harmonized sales tax while baby diapers are cheaper.
June 1, 2011