Renters will be hit with an increase of several hundred dollars when the government merges Ontario’s sales taxes next year, new Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Hudak said Thursday as he urged provincial residents to revolt against the changes.

“At a time when Ontario families deserve our support, Dalton McGuinty’s Liberals are making it tough for people to make ends meet,” Hudak said during his first media event since becoming party leader last Saturday.

According to Hudak, an average rent of $1,000 a month will rise between $270 and $320 a year when the eight per cent sales tax is incorporated into goods and services previously exempt — such as repair and property management, natural gas and utilities.

Hudak said the increase, which will hit Ontario’s four million renters, is only one example of the many goods and services that will become more expensive under the new system, and he is urging people to sign an online petition at www.daltonsalestax.com to push the government to backtrack on the change.