Since the implementation of the Harmonized Sales Tax on Canada Day only applies directly for now to British Columbia and Ontario – and to a certain extent, Nova Scotia – I hesitated in using the HST as a subject in the latest GNN Poll.
However, I do believe the HST is like a bad weed, one that will spread across the country, which makes it a good idea for golf operators in all provinces to keep an eye on what’s happening in the affected provinces.
I think what’s happening in Nova Scotia, which already had a form of HST, is indicative of what could happen everywhere else in that governments will start to see it as a cash cow that can be milked whenever they see fit. If you hadn’t heard, they jacked up the provincial portion of the tax by two points to 15 per cent.
So, if you’re in a province that isn’t yet affected, it might be a good idea to watch what’s going on in B.C., Ontario and Nova Scotia. Most people from the golf industry that I talk to about the HST are expecting some grumbling, but won’t really know the extent of consumer sentiment until after its implemented.
Some feel that, although golfers won’t be happy, they will quickly accept the HST and begrudgingly pay it, but the potential is there for long-term dissatisfaction, perhaps affecting the number of rounds played by individuals, depending on their budgets.
I’ll have more to say on the topic later this week, but before I spout off, let’s hear what you have to say in this week’s GNN Poll.
What do you think will be the long-term consumer reaction to the HST?
Be sure to cast your vote at the GNN Poll and don’t hold off because you’re in a province that doesn’t yet have the HST. We’d like to hear from all areas of Canada.
Of course, you’re always welcome to expand your thoughts in the comments section below.