Well it is official. Ontario will make the move to one blended sales tax at 13% beginning July 1, 2010. NOTO continues to seek clarification on a number of items surrounding its implementation - however we thought we should share with you what we are clear on now.
As you begin collecting deposits and creating invoices for your 2010 guests, you will need to watch the trip dates in order to know whether you should be charging the new HST. If the trip dates are after July 1, 2010 you must charge HST on the package. If the trip begins and ends before July 1, 2010 then proceed as you have been with the current PST and GST taxes. Where it gets confusing is where the trip starts before July 1, 2010 but ends after that date. Our understanding is that operators will be required to prorate the taxes for these trips.
We have been told that the Government is in the process of developing HST information packages that will offer more specific details. NOTO will forward this information on to its members via email as soon as it becomes available.
Many of you have asked what will happen to the GST rebate that many of your guests receive under the Foreign Convention and Tour Incentive Program when the harmonized sales tax takes effect.
We have received confirmation from provincial officials that the rebate your guests can apply for will be half of the 13% harmonized tax or 6.5%. There had been some initial concern that the rebate would apply to the federal portion of the tax only.
We are also continuing to urge provincial officials to lobby the federal government for a return to the old, more flexible visitor rebate program. We don't know how this effort is going at the moment, but we will keep pushing on your behalf.
Although it is still possible for details to change as the legislation is passed and the regulations drafted, it appears at this point that we can count on a 6.5% rebate for guests who qualify under the program. We will provide further updates as new information becomes available.
Taken from page 11 of "The Outfitter", Winter 2009 Issue