Much of the debate in the Legislature this month has been about the imposition of the Harmonized Sales Tax (HST). Bill 9, which makes way for the HST, is currently before the House, and the Opposition is doing everything it can to stop that legislation from becoming law.
For instance, as I write this report, we are debating an amendment to the Legislation that will require the BC Liberals to embark on a public consultation process before proceeding with the HST. That amendment was made by the Opposition because we believe that the public has a right to be consulted on this issue.
And through the use of the Initiative Act, it is clear that tens of thousands of British Columbians also feel that they have a right to be consulted. The petition is being circulated in communities across the province and the response has been unprecedented.
People want to have a government that listens and is responsive to the electorate.
Since the BC Liberals announced just days after the election that they were breaking their promise on the HST, they have spent 9 months trying to convince people that the HST is the most important thing the government can do for the economy. But people still don’t believe it.
The BC Liberal government thinks they know best. In fact, they are so sure of it, that they plan to spend $1 million of your money sending you a flyer explaining why you should support the HST.
People tell me that they are tired of this government treating them like they aren’t smart enough to make their own decisions. People tell me that they have heard the BC Liberal argument for the HST, but that they still don’t buy it.
For me, the BC Liberals’ breaking of their promise not to implement the HST is the central issue. British Columbians deserve a government that is honest with the electorate and respects the wishes of those who elected them.
Norm Macdonald is the NDP MLA for Columbia River-Revelstoke
You can reach him by telephone at 250-344-4816 or toll-free at 1-866-870-4188. His constituency office is located at 104, 806 9th Street N, Box 2052, Golden, BC, V0A 1H0. You can also reach him by e-mail address at firstname.lastname@example.org. His website is at www.NormMacdonald.ca