Legislation to repeal the HST could still be about eight months away, said former premier Bill Vander Zalm as he prepared to deliver a 700,000-signature petition opposing the new tax today.

After its delivery, Elections B.C. staff will spend 42 days verifying names and signatures. It will then go to legislative committee for up to three months.

“The government is going to do whatever it can to stall the process,” said the former Socred premier, adding there have been hints the legislature will not sit this fall.

“Our petition won’t hit the legislative floor until the spring of next year.”

A second phase of the anti-HST fight, targeting Liberal MLAs in 24 ridings for recall, can’t begin until 18 months after the last provincial election.

The timing, plus Elections B.C.’s one-to-two-week consideration of the recall, means the initiative wouldn’t start until early December. It places the 60-day petition window on top of the busy holiday season.

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