IN THE HOUSE ~ Question Period ~ HST

41st Parliament, 1st Session ~ Context : Question Period

    Mr. Peter Julian (Burnaby—New Westminster, NDP): Mr. Speaker, B.C. families did not want the Conservative-Liberal harmonized sales tax three years ago, but the government refused to listen. We rejected the unfair tax again in referendum last summer.

    The government wants to make B.C. families pay billions in penalties. The government continues to stall and refuses to implement the removal of the HST.

    Will the Conservatives finally take responsibility for their role and negotiate a fair deal for British Columbians? Why do they continue to ask B.C. families to pick up the tab for this absolute, utter, complete Conservative-Liberal HST fiasco?

    Hon. Ted Menzies (Minister of State (Finance), CPC): Mr. Speaker, we actually respect provincial jurisdiction and harmonization on the sales tax is provincial jurisdiction. British Columbia chose not to continue with that, but the B.C. government has acknowledged the that harmonization agreement stipulated that transitional assistance must be recovered should the province wish to exit the program.

    Mr. Peter Julian (Burnaby—New Westminster, NDP): Mr. Speaker, that sound we are hearing is the Conservatives desperately trying to blame somebody. They have nobody to blame but themselves.

    The government has already collected two years of HST revenue from B.C. families. The unfair Conservative tax has already cost B.C. families hundreds upon hundreds of dollars a year. The Conservative government seems to want to make British Columbians pay and pay and pay.

    When will the government agreement to give families a break and stop making them pay for the Conservative-Liberal HST fiasco? When will it fix the B.C. HST error?

    Hon. Ted Menzies (Minister of State (Finance), CPC): Mr. Speaker, the only HST error comes from the NDP. Its members are uncertain whether they are for it or against it.

    For example, in British Columbia I understand now they are against it. In Quebec they are for the HST. In Nova Scotia, they actually supported an increase in the HST.

    They cannot have it both ways. Either they want to reduce taxes for Canadians and make taxes fairer or they do not. I am assuming they do not.