Don’t you think people in Ontario need an Ontario Sales Tax Holiday, similar to the one’s found south of the border? Did you know that between August 5-7th of this year the State of Missouri had a sales tax holiday on all computer software costing $350 or less or that Texas has an annual sales tax holiday on May 28-30th on refrigerators priced $2,000 or less. A number of US states have sales tax holidays to boost their economies and curb cross-border shopping and a list of the various states can be found on the Sales Tax Institutes website.
The Economics Center at the University of Cincinnati studied the impact of the sales tax holiday in Ohio in August 2015 and found that retail sales increased by 6.48% and sales tax collections increased by consumers purchasing non-exempt items along with the exempt items. The Economics Center estimated that the State of Ohio had an increase in $8M in sales tax collected, a loss of $3.3M on exempt goods for a net gain to the State of Ohio by $4.7M.
So should Ontario provide its citizens with an annual Ontario Sales Tax Holiday? Many stores throughout Canada will advertise events where you don’t pay the GST or HST but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t get paid, the customer is just not the one paying it. However, if the Province wanted to help families getting their kids ready to go back to school why not offer an Ontario Sales Tax Holiday sometime in August on back to school supplies. With Ontario residents paying 13% HST on almost all products and services would it not help boost the economy by encouraging shopping throughout the province and providing financial relief to parents throughout the province that are trying to make ends meet in an economy that is still waiting to bounce back.
Would you like to see an annual Sales Tax Holiday in your province, leave us your thoughts in the comments below.