Important information on the PST for April 1, 2013 (Updated)
On April 1, 2013, the HST will no longer be applicable in B.C. and the PST will be re-introduced. The new PST will rely on point of sale exemptions, similar to the old PST system. When purchasing goods for your farm, you can complete an exemption form or present your “Farmer ID Card” as proof of your eligibility for PST exemptions.
We want to encourage producers to participate in the Farmer ID program, which helps support the work of the BC Agriculture Council. Info on the Farmer ID program is available at: https://www.bcac.bc.ca/bcac-farmer-id-card-registration.
For more information on the PST, please contact Paul Hargreaves at the BCDA at 604-294-3775. Additional information from the Provincial Government is in the attachment below.
For producers who are customers of FortisBC
FortisBC has been fielding enquiries from farm customers regarding their gas billing and the up-coming switch back to the PST. Producers may be exempt from paying PST on all or portions of their gas bill. This billing exemption as of April 1, 2013 will not take place automatically since FortisBC has no way of identifying bona fide B.C. farm status on specific accounts unless customers are in contact with FortisBC.
As such, FortisBC has established a procedure for this confirmation of farmer status to take place. To register your exemption status for your FortisBC gas bills, producers can email a scanned copy of their Farmer ID to firstname.lastname@example.org or fax it to 1-888-224-2720.
Please include any and all qualifying gas account numbers, as well as a primary contact name and phone number in your email or fax. FortisBC customer service representatives are available to answer questions at 1-888-224-2710.
For producers who are customers of BC Hydro
If you already receive the 1151F Farm Rate from BC Hydro, you should automatically get a PST exemption on your electricity bill as of April 1, 2013.
If you are a new farm account that needs to be classified as Conservation Rate exempt:
- The land must be classified as ‘agricultural’ by the BC Assessment Authority.
- The service to the farm may not include any commercial operations. (see Note below)
- Prior to BC Hydro making any changes to the taxation status of an account, BC Hydro must be provided with sufficient documentation. There are two approved forms of documentation: a copy of your most recent BC Assessment Form a copy of your Property Tax Notice.
Please fax or mail a copy of the approved documentation to BC Hydro at:
BC Hydro, Billing, 6911 Southpoint Drive C01, Burnaby, B.C. V3N 4X8
Please Note: Commercial operations, as defined by the Consumer Taxation Branch, refer to activities such as sales or manufacturing, which extend beyond those activities normally associated with farming. For example, planting, growing, raising, grading and packaging of the farms own products are considered a farming activity. The retail sale of these sorted or packaged products, or a further processing or manufacturing of these products, are commercial activities, for which the exemption does not apply.
For more information, please contact BC Hydro directly:
Phone: (604) 224-9376 or toll free 1-800-224-9376,
Hours: Monday to Friday, 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. and Saturday, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.