VICTORIA – Throughout the spring session of the legislature, Premier Clark showed she is only looking out for her wealthy and powerful friends, making life more expensive for young people, seniors and working families in B.C.
“The premier’s budget made it clear who is important to her and who isn’t,” said John Horgan, leader of B.C.’s New Democrats. “She gave the wealthiest two per cent a big tax cut they didn’t even ask for, and stuck everyone else paying more through MSP, ICBC, tolls, fare hikes, and hydro bills.”
Clark kept her promise to cut taxes for the wealthy, said Horgan, but blew off her promise to find every British Columbian a family doctor by 2015, and blew off her promise to fund a settlement with school teachers.
“Premier Clark is certainly a friend to the big multinational corporations who want to buy B.C.’s natural gas as cheaply as possible,” Horgan said. “But she’s no friend to the people of British Columbia, who actually own that gas. Bargain basement prices weren’t enough; she also rigged the system so she can negotiate in secret. That’s just wrong.”
New Democrats exposed hundreds of millions in waste and mismanagement during the spring session. The premier’s pet project, the Auditor General for Local Government, squandered more than $5.2 million. B.C. Hydro wasted hundreds of millions of dollars on failed IT projects and faulty transmission line towers. Prime development real estate in Coquitlam was sold in a fire sale for $43 million below its value.
Meanwhile, Clark refused to repeal a policy that claws back maternity benefits from families receiving disability payments, effectively pushing children into poverty.
“The Liberals have forgotten who they work for,” Horgan said. “Christy Clark has forgotten whose money she’s wasting. At every turn, she’s chosen B.C. Liberal insiders and wealthy foreign interests at the expense of hard-working people in British Columbia.”
New Democrats get results and find stride in 2015 session
- Premier Christy Clark demonstrated in the spring legislative session that she is not there for middle class families struggling to make ends meet; instead she’s focused on the wealthy and powerful. John Horgan and the B.C. New Democrats exposed the B.C. Liberals’ priorities and successfully pressed for positive change
- Exposed the B.C. Liberal budget tax cut for millionaires – The B.C. Liberal Budget made B.C. families pay more for ferry fares, hydro rates, MSP premiums and ICBC rates while Premier Clark gave the wealthiest two per cent a $236 million tax break.
- Exposed fire sale of public land – The B.C. Liberals sold off public land to a Liberal donor at $43 million less than the appraised value in their rush to get money in the bank before the fiscal year end.
- Ended the clawback of support from B.C.’s poorest children – New Democrats worked to help single moms speak out about the clawback of child support from single parents living on income assistance or disability. The government relented and reversed the policy.
- Exposed Christy Clark’s pricey pet project– New Democrats shone a bright light on Christy Clark’s pet project – the Auditor General for Local Government – which has been in chaos since being created two years ago. After wasting more than $5 million issuing just two audits, the auditor was fired, everyone hired lawyers and the costs to B.C. taxpayers continue to pile up.
- Exposed B.C. Liberal insider scandals – New Democrats shed light on multiple scandals that involved board members and B.C. Liberal-friendly contractors and lobbyists who profited greatly under the Liberal government.
- Exposed broken Liberal promise for every family to have a family doctor by 2015 – The B.C. Liberal “GP for Me” program was just another hollow promise. Families across B.C. are finding it more difficult than ever to get a family doctor, despite Premier Clark’s promise that everyone who wanted a family doctor would have one by this year.
- Uncovered waste and mismanagement at B.C. Hydro – New Democrats exposed B.C. Hydro project failures, missed targets, cost overruns, faulty transmission towers, huge losses on private power contracts, out-of-control contracting out and a costly and overbudget IT scheme totaling a half a billion dollars that will cost ratepayers dearly.
- Advocated for democratic reform – New Democrats proposed an extensive package of reforms that would help make elections fairer and ensure legislators do a better job for the public, make government more accountable, and give citizens more power. The Liberals refused to support these positive changes, and instead introduced their own election legislation that moves us closer to U.S.-style politics by removing spending restrictions for pre-election advertising.
- Providing needed leadership on agriculture – New Democrats are providing a much needed forum for the agricultural industry to share its ideas and concerns at the legislature by establishing the Opposition Standing Committee on Agriculture and Food when the government refused to provide this valuable forum.