HST nixes TransLink parking lot tax

Surrey North Delta Leader

By Jeff Nagel

TransLink will lose the power to apply a special sales tax on pay parking lots, the province’s budget shows.

Implementation of the 12 per cent harmonized sales tax means the old pay parking tax will disappear.

It likely means no difference for users of pay parking lots in terms of the tax they currently pay.

But TransLink would no longer get the $15 million a year it now collects.

And it would be unable to carry through on plans to triple the tax to 21 per cent to help fund expansion.

The extra $33 million in revenue the parking sales tax was to deliver critical funding toward TransLink’s next 10-year plan.

“Implications and options for TransLink related to the removal of the parking tax are being reviewed as part of the ongoing funding review,” according to the budget document.

The move to an HST in B.C. eliminates the province’s sales tax collection bureaucracy and any ability to levy customized sales taxes.

TransLink officials say it’s too early to tell what impact elimination of the tax will have.

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