Kelowna organizations band with BC counterparts to condemn spec tax

Local business organizations from across the province are coming together, united in opposition.

Scrap the Speculation Tax is a coalition made up of local businesses like the Kelowna Chamber of Commerce, local Homebuilders Association, and the Okanagan Mainline Real Estate Board.

Chamber Past President Tom Dyas says the coalition is calling for the government to complete an economic impact assessment, before asking property owners to pay up.

"That is the responsibility of the government. They have all of that information at their fingertips, they have access to all that information," he said. 

"So it would be on them to look at putting that forward to us as businesses, and us as residents of the province of British Columbia, before moving forward with something which could have such seismic type of effects throughout the province."

Dyas says even the threat of a tax has made things dicey for some businesses.

"Not good business process. Businesses require predictability, certainty, they need to understand and they need to work on the basis that there are guarantees," he said.

"This tax, based upon being implemented to this nature, does not provide that for them at all."

As far as the Chamber goes, he says they heard concern from many members of the building development sector, when the tax was first proposed.

"We also heard substantially from the trades and the restaurants, because they were receving communications from their clients, and saying (that) it looks like your province doesn't want us there anymore."

Along with local organizations, the coalition has added Nanaimo's Chamber of Commerce, and Tourism Victoria.

They've launched a website you can find here.