BRITISH COLUMBIA

BC PST Return Leaves Many Businesses Unprepared (VIDEO)

03/31/2013 07:14 EDT | Updated 03/31/2013 07:17 EDT

The return of B.C.'s Provincial Sales Tax (PST) is leaving many businesses unprepared, as many have yet to do anything to revert to the province's old tax system.

About 25,000 businesses have not yet updated their point-of-sale systems to go back to the PST system, which levies a seven per cent tax on most products and exempts services such as hair cuts, gym passes and restaurant meals, CTV reported.

Small Business Minister Naomi Yamamoto expected that many businesses would face difficulties going back to the old tax system, she told the network.

Yamamoto warned consumers to check their receipts and ensure they were being charged both the PST and the GST.

Premier Christy Clark acknowledged in a YouTube video that many in B.C. are unhappy to go back to the old system, which replaces the 12 per cent Harmonized Sales Tax (HST) that was defeated in a provincial referendum.

Clark added that the change has happened "efficiently and faster than many expected," and that she's now focusing on the BC Jobs Plan in the hope of growing the province's economy.

Businesses that haven't transitioned to PST aren't completely out of luck. They can call toll-free lines at B.C.'s Ministry of State for Small Business with any questions, and the ministry is also putting together an outreach program that will provide them with information on how to collect the tax properly, the Canadian Press reported.

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