Editorial: Liberals’ PST cut good for business

Cutting the cost of Provincial Sales Tax on electricity to large industry and business is a good move on the BC Liberal government’s part.

Cutting the cost of Provincial Sales Tax on electricity to large industry and business is a good move on the BC Liberal government’s part. The announcement was made Tuesday afternoon as Christy Clark’s government released its feel-good, pre-election budget.

The PST will be cut in half, to 3.5 per cent, this year, and completely eliminated on April 1, 2019.

British Columbia is apparently the only province in Canada that charges a sales tax on electricity for such businesses, and for a company like Catalyst Paper, that eats up about 30 per cent of their costs.

The move comes as good news to the pulp and paper industry, and that means it will be good for communities like Port Alberni that rely heavily on the forestry industry.

The forest industry in B.C. is closely integrated. The pulp and paper and solid wood sectors help keep one another viable. This practice is visible in Port Alberni: sawmills like APD and Somass sell wood chips and hog fuel to Catalyst Paper, providing the mills with needed revenue and an energy source to the paper mill.

Mayors in eight B.C. municipalities including the Alberni Valley called on the provincial government last month to exempt electricity purchased by industry and business from the PST, to help protect forestry jobs. This week they are celebrating the budget decision.

As the mayors pointed out, supporting the forest sector in any manner is vital in this time of uncertainty due to the Softwood Lumber Agreement coming due, as well as talk about renegotiating trade deals coming from south of the 49th parallel.

editor@albernivalleynews

twitter.com/alberninews

facebook.com/albernivalleynews

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

City of Port Alberni approves five-storey expansion at Tsawaayuus-Rainbow Gardens

Neighbours voice concern about traffic, loss of green space in wake of decision

Wounded Warriors runners arrive in Port Alberni

Fundraising dinner will take place at Royal Canadian Legion

Arrowvale Farm near Port Alberni hosts maple syrup fest

Taste west coast maple syrup on Leap Year Saturday and watch demonstrations too

ACRD urges B.C. gov’t to upgrade Bamfield Road in wake of winter storm

ACRD board to write letter to Premier John Horgan, expressing urgency

Two law enforcement trucks ‘deliberately’ set on fire in northern B.C., RCMP say

Police say they have video evidence of a person in the area of the truck fires

B.C. mother, daughter return home after coronavirus quarantine in Asia

Jensine Morabito and her daughter were on Holland America’s Westerdam but did not catch the virus

Leap Year means we get an extra day in February, so how are you spending it?

People online have a number of suggestions and plans on how they will be spending Saturday

Greta sticker that drew outrage in Alberta not child pornography: RCMP

X-Site Energy Services has denied having anything to do with the stickers

Bald eagle hit by train in northern B.C. has a chance of survival

The raptor has been taken to OWL in the Lower Mainland for recovery

Cheslatta Carrier Nation and Rio Tinto sign a historic agreement

Co-operation crucial to stem dropping Nechako Reservoir level

Hundreds of B.C. firefighters ‘climb the wall’ for BC Lung Association

The charity fundraiser saw participants climbing up 48 storeys

Stories of sexual assault at B.C. tree planting camps ‘shocking but not surprising:’ advocate

Contractors’ association is working with trainers to create respectful culture

Most Read