VICTORIA (NEWS1130) – The BC government says a new online registration system will make it easier for small businesses to deal with the PST now that the HST is being phased out.

Finance Minister Kevin Falcon says things like haircuts,bicycles and meals out will be exempt from the PST once again by April 1 of next year.

And if you run a business, particularly a small one, you will be able to handle the PST online.

“(Businesses) can make their payments online, they can look at their account online, they can communicate with tax administrators online,” he explains to News1130. “We’ve aligned the filing date to coincide with the GST remittance at the end of the month.”

The software will cost about $16-million and will replace about 100 workers.

Falcon says the new changes will be much more simplistic for the business community to use. It will also include added benefits.

“The whole hotel room tax, which was a whole separate act, it had its own separate paper work and remittance requirements, we folded that into the PST too,” he adds.

For small businesses, the shift to the PST / GST is expected to cost an average of $3,000.

The Canadian Federation of Independent Business’ Shachi Kurl says it will mean accounting and cash register changes.

“There’s a lot of work, and in the minds of many small business owners they wish they didn’t have to be doing it, but if they are doing it, they hope they’re going back to a tax that’s a little bit better than the one they left with,” she explains.

To that end, she says the new PST will have the same filing dates as the GST, meaning fewer deadlines for business owners to keep track of.