Residents of British Columbia are being asked to vote on a decrease in the province’s harmonized sales tax (HST) but the postal strike is threatening the mail-in ballot process of the referendum.
The referendum is asking residents: Are you in favour of extinguishing the HST and reinstating the PST (provincial sales tax) in conjunction with the GST (goods and services tax)?
The provincial government has vowed to lower the HST rate from 12 per cent to 10 per cent by 2014 if the harmonized tax is kept in place.
The HST referendum started June 13 and is set to last until July 22. The vote is being conducted by mail-in ballot and Canada Post employees have been locked out since June 14.
Elections BC is continuing production of the HST referendum voting packages so there should be no delay in getting the packages to registered voters once Canada Post service resumes, said a statement from Craig James, the province’s acting chief electoral officer.
Canada Post has assured Elections BC the voting packages in the mail system will be stored until service resumes. No changes to the referendum timetable are being contemplated at this time, the statement said.
Voters who have received their voting packages can deliver their ballot package to any one of 60 Service BC Centres in the province.
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