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PRESS RELEASE: BC First Nations join Vander Zalm legal challenge to HST

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BC First Nations join Vander Zalm legal challenge to HST

Vancouver – The Union of BC Indian Chiefs has joined forces with Bill Vander Zalm in supporting a legal challenge to the HST. On Thursday of last week, the UBCIC passed a motion agreeing to support a challenge to the much hated sales tax, on the grounds that the tax will be applied to aboriginals in BC, and is outside the jurisdiction of both the federal and provincial government.

The motion reads:

“THEREFORE BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED that the Union of BC Indian Chiefs Council supports the Fight HST campaign in exploring legal options, including a constitutional challenge to the implementation of the HST.”

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip said the HST will devastate native peoples in BC, who are among the poorest people in the province, “The HST will hit our peoples the hardest. They will have to pay it on the majority of their purchases, which are made off reserve. Many First Nations people struggle just to survive, and this tax will severely hurt them.”

Phillip pointed out that not only does the HST appear to contravene Section 92 of the Constitution which grants exclusive authority for provincial sales taxes to the provinces, but it also contravenes aboriginal sovereignty over taxation for natives.

“We are pleased to offer our support to former premier Vander Zalm in his efforts to stop this tax. It is not good for British Columbians, and it is not good for First Nations. We must fight together to defeat it, and send the government a message that they cannot run roughshod over the rights of people, especially those least able to defend themselves,” said Phillip.

Fight HST leader, Bill Vander Zalm, said he is very happy to have the support of the Union of BC Indian Chiefs. “The HST has brought people together in our province in way that we have never seen it before. For the first time, we are all fighting together on the same issue, and that is a power that no government can stop.”

Vander Zalm says he is soliciting funds from associations and organizations to facilitate the legal challenge. He says the legal challenge is independent of the Fight HST Citizen Initiative petition. His plan is to seek an “injunction” against the HST to stop it from proceeding, or to halt its advance while the courts work to determine whether it is legal.

“An injunction would kill the tax on the spot. Our lawyers tell us that a judge may look favourably upon an injunction, since it would take two years for our challenge to go through the courts. In that time the BC Government would have collected over $16,000,000,000 in HST. If it was found to be illegal, it would have to be repaid and that would bankrupt the treasury.”

“By working together, we will show the government that they must listen, and that democracy is not completely dead in BC,” Vander Zalm concluded.

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17 Comments

Comment by Neil Lensen
2010-06-08 07:30:14

It is good to have a sign that demoncracy is not “completely dead” in BC.
As most people realize democracy is largely dead at the federal level, since politician are openly representing Ottawa to their constituents instead of representing their constituents to Ottawa.
Governments seem addicted to taxpayers dollars, and waste money on duplicitous issues.
BC politicians gave themselves 30% plus wage increases and then have the temerity to say we have a significant revenue shortfall. There is no place for arrogance and greed in our legislature. We need responsible government that will protect the public purse and protect taxpayers from dishonesty. Do our politicians know the meaning of the word “integrity?”

 
Comment by Joe Skrlac
2010-06-08 07:52:34

I back the first nation people 100% because us retired folks on fixed income or low income families have no where to get this 12% added tax except less food in the house..
We know exactly what your families are going through and together we will fight this all the way, and because of every man woman & child would have to pay a further 12% on goods & services in BC.

 
Comment by John Wood
2010-06-08 10:37:56

Best news I have heard in a while – it just gets better and better doesn’t it. It is a great way of telling Campbell and his party, the end is near.

Thank you for getting this intiative up and running – it focuses so much anger and frustration and really does give the people of British Columbia a chance in dealing with the extreme right wing party that is slowly ruining BC for future generations.

John Wood

 
Comment by Jean Kanty
2010-06-08 10:46:24

This is the wrong tax at the wrong time. If big companies are given a major tax break because of a world recession there is no guarantee their customers will be able to purchase their products. The promised job creation won’t happen but small businesses will be bankrupted and citizens deprived by this Hated Sales Tax.

 
Comment by Frank Brown
2010-06-08 11:01:54

I totally agree with the above. I am a white person, but I know lots of first nations peoplem who are at the bottom end of the wealth chain. Like me, a retired pensioner I will be hurt by the HST.
As an afterthought is Bill planning a massive rally, say on or about July 01. Hold it on the lawns of the Legislature, find money to bus people in from all over the province.

 
Comment by Mike
2010-06-08 11:31:41

Way to go! There is strength in numbers and this just proves it! Together we will send a strong message to Dictator Campbell and his crew that citizens will not tolerate any more of his Corporate Welfare pandering to his big business buddies!

 
Comment by Bob Haslett
2010-06-08 11:58:31

Yesterday I received a notice from my cable company advising me that my bill will rise by 7% as of July 1st. It is my intent to send this bill to Premier Campbell and ask him to reimburse me for this amount. He said the tax would be “revenue neutral” and I’m going to hold him to it. I plan to do the same with each increase.

 
Comment by Johnny
2010-06-08 17:02:27

Vote with your feet. Our neighbours to the south are giving us a bit of relief.

British Columbia citizens qualify for
nonresident sales tax exemption
Beginning July 1, citizens of British Columbia, Canada, will
qualify for an exemption from Washington State retail sales
tax. The exemption applies only to items purchased for use
outside our state.

 
Comment by Sheila Brenton
2010-06-08 21:34:44

I too received a cable bill that already has the HST on it. Apparently my bill is from June 16 to July 15 so there are three taxes present…PST, GST and HST. An interesting note, the HST is $4.00 more than the PST and GST. If this is any indication of what is to come and I believe it is, a lot of people, including those who do have jobs will be cutting back, therefore, lots of businesses will be losing customers and eventually will start laying off employees…when will this government realize we have had enough. We can’t afford to support their waste anymore.

 
Comment by Olive stogrin
2010-06-09 00:23:47

I lost all respect for this government , when we had such a bad ression , Campbell& his cronies gave themselves a hefty raise, yet our ambulance drivers were refused a raise, plus they are cutting the ambulance service of 14 ambulances ?? Campbell& his cronies should give back thier hefty raises , so we can have ambulance service where needed, i think the alcohol he drank in Hawaii did something to his brain,with pushing another tax on all of
us

 
Comment by CindyJ
2010-06-09 17:01:17

I agree with all of the above, and I think everyone in the province should send all their increased bills to Premier Campbell. Flood his desk with them, including to ones we get from credit bureaus for not paying our bills. When they call just tell them Gordon Campbell is paying them and give them the address.

 
Comment by Rocky McAfee
2010-06-09 21:32:29

This tax revolution is long overdue. I’m sick and tired of Campbell and his legal gangsterism allowed to rape the people of B.C. !!

 
Comment by Hal Adam
2010-06-09 22:18:59

Regarding what John Wood said

. You got to be kidding! It is extreme LEFT WING parties like the liberals and NDP that are DRUNK on taxes! The NDP is only against this version of taxes and they have NOT promised they would kill it if they were elected. The liberals have way to much government and the solution is to CUT all government waste, like the so called Human Rights councils which are actually shutting down all speach they do not like.

 
Comment by Terry Paul
2010-06-10 12:16:31

May 25th I received notice from my parking provider (Robbins in Victoria), my parking will increase 7% July 1. Further evidence that the “revenue neutral” and claims that it will save companies money that they’ll pass on to consumers are clearly lies (as predicted)

 
Comment by Julie
2010-06-11 13:29:30

We owe the First Nations People a huge thank you, for fighting the HST. Their people live under tough circumstances already. The HST, is going to force their families to live, far under the poverty level. They have a hard time feeding and clothing their children too.

We also must thank the First Nations People, who are trying to save our environment, from Campbell and Hansen’s exploitation. Toxic mine waste, being dumped into Fish Lake, which will kill every animal and fish that use that lake. The poison will leach into the eco system. Stopping the dirty oil tankers from China. Their fight to save the Spirit Bears, from being hunted. God help us all, if they drill for, off shore gas and oil wells. When that spill happens, the Orca Whales and all the marine life will perish. There is still oil collecting on the rocks, from the Valdez 20 years ago. I always sign the First Nations petitions, to save their wild life, and, support their efforts to save us all from Campbell’s pollution plans. The First Nation lands, may well be the only place left, for wild life to exist. If Campbell has his way, the destruction of this province will be absolute. So, we must support the First Nations citizens, in any way we can.

 
Comment by Guenter
2010-06-12 01:11:11

It’s time for Gordon Campbell to resign as Premier. Unfortunately his arrogance and hunger for power will hinder him to do so.

 
Comment by Herb Spencer
2010-06-12 10:26:02

So, Gordon Campbell is running out of excuses to justify rushing in his HST. After his secret trip to this year’s Bilderberg Conference (to meet the world’s power brokers, like Kissinger, Rubin, Summers etc : http://www.straight.com/article-327416/vancouver/leaked-list-suggests-premier-gordon-campbell-bilderberg-2010-meetings ), he’s claiming that the “HST will secure the long-term future of the province”. By ‘long-term’ he can’t mean 8 years – the timeframe he used to justify the benefits of the Winter Olympics, only FIFTY extra jobs came from that multi-billion boondoggle to his friends in the BC construction industry. He must mean 2 years, so he can run on his success for 12 months before his next election in 2013. Any longer and the BC Liberals won’t be around to push their pro Big-Business ideology onto the public.

The obvious long-term solution is to copy Alberta by abolishing ALL sales taxes and then have BC rely principally on income taxes. This will have the additional benefit of blowing away the HST vs PST smokescreen that the shills of Big-Business (the so-called economists) have tried to confuse the public with. It is Big-Business that has come to BC to exploit OUR natural resources – let them pay properly for them, as they do in Alberta and Australia.

 

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