"Growing chorus" against HST hike in P.E.I. grows again

Teresa Wright
Send to a friend

Send this article to a friend.


More industry stakeholders are speaking out about the negative effects the HST has had on Prince Edward Island’s construction sector.

Last week, the Canadian Home Builders' Association on P.E.I told the Standing Committee on Education and Economic Development the number of building permits issued between 2012 and 2014 has dropped from 1,086 to 665, a dip of more than $85 million.

The association blames the harmonized sales tax as the main culprit for this drop.

This week, the Construction Industry Association of P.E.I. raised concern about an increase to the HST rate in P.E.I., saying this would be an added hurdle to further economic growth, fueling activity in the underground economy.

This association joins what the Opposition Progressive Conservatives say is a “growing chorus” of groups raising concern about the negative economic impacts an increase to the HST on Prince Edward Island would bring.

Among the groups and organizations expressing concern are the Canadian Home Builders Council, the Real Estate Association of P.E.I., the Tourism Industry Association of P.E.I., the Greater Charlottetown Chamber of Commerce, the Canadian Federation of Independent Business, the Canadian Taxpayers Federation and the Council of Canadians.

“My concern is that we can clearly see that when the HST was brought in by this government it didn’t help grow the economy as claimed,” said economic development critic Matthew MacKay.

“If the MacLauchlan government goes ahead and raises the HST higher I don’t see how that negative trend will magically reverse itself,” said MacKay.

HST was introduced in P.E.I. in 2013.

Organizations: Canadian Home Builders Council, Association on P.E.I, Standing Committee on Education Construction Industry Association of P.E.I. Opposition Progressive Conservatives Real Estate Association Tourism Industry Association Greater Charlottetown Chamber of Commerce Canadian Federation of Independent Business

Geographic location: Prince Edward Island

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Thanks for voting!

Top of page



Recent comments

  • EL Douglas
    March 19, 2016 - 11:40

    I might agree to raising the HST, if it would eliminate the deficit. However, increasing government revenue in a liberal administration has proved one thing only, and that is the increase in revenue leads to an increase in government spending. For example, money received for harmonizing the GST and PST into the HST accomplished nothing in terms of eliminating government deficits. In fairness to the liberal government, currently, the only way to win an election on PEI, is to promise to spend money on people who see it as free money. If current thinking does not change, then we are headed to a "Greek solution". This is a solution where the lenders of money will tell government how much to cut and there will be no choice! With this current government, we will soon be there!!

  • Taxpayer
    March 19, 2016 - 09:41

    Economies in the western world are moving more and more from the primary (resources) and secondary (manufacturing) to the tertiary (retail & services) sector. PEI is a high cost jurisdiction because it chooses to be a separate province so you need tax revenue to find that. If we're moving toward a service economy then we should tax that sector or else start by shutting down the high cost underused hospitals and schools and roads, which happen to be in rural areas of PEI.

  • mad as hell
    March 19, 2016 - 09:14

    Why is "spend less" never an option for these people?

    • mad as well
      March 20, 2016 - 21:07

      Ask your neighbours and fellow citizens why they want a school in every neighbourhood and community, regardless of whether there are kids in it or not. Ask your neighbours and fellow citizens why they want a hospital every 30 km, regardless of whether some emergency departments see a single patient during the overnight hours. Ask your neighbours and fellow citizens why they want paved roads everywhere across the countryside (PEI has the same # of kms of roads as the City of Toronto) regardless of how few people live on those roads. The list goes on and on and on and on. Face it. Islanders are the most self-entitled people in Canada. No other medium sized town or small city in Canada of under 150,000 people requires so much money to be spent on public services and is burdened by such a high degree of over-governance (27 MLAs, 4 MPs, 4 Senators, 73 municipalities, 73 mayors, 500+ municipal councilors), an equally high degree of unnecessary judges (3 provincial court judges, 5 supreme court judges, 3 appeals court judges), 35 fire departments, 3 different police services, etc etc etc. But Islanders want and demand this. That's why ''spend less'' is never an option for Islanders.

  • Concerned Islander
    March 18, 2016 - 17:50

    The way I see it, HST is not the way to go, these organuizations who have spoken not to raise our HST should be listened to. The Government would do this solely to get them selves additional money for the debt they caused by total mismanagement and ues misued taxpayers money. Why should we the taxpayer pay for mistakes of Ghiz, Sheridan, Roach and others. Disregard NS & NB, they have more population and Industry than PEI. If this Goverment does raise HST there should be a mass demonstrations at the Government house.

    • Dug
      March 19, 2016 - 08:32

      The reason you are paying for their mistakes is that You voted them in, your mistake.