As Premier John Horgan marks the final month British Columbians will pay MSP premiums, BC Liberal Leader Andrew Wilkinson continues to avoid questions about whether he’ll bring back the MSP or cut services like health care and education.
Wilkinson has strongly opposed the employer health tax (EHT) on the largest 15 per cent of businesses, which was put in place to pay for the elimination of MSP premiums. But Mike Smyth points out in this morning’s Province:
“If [Wilkinson] promises to get rid of the payroll tax, how will he replace all that revenue? Bring back the MSP? Slash program spending? Plunge the government’s balanced budget back into deficit?” (The Province, Dec 5)
Wilkinson said last week that he’s not planning to tell British Columbians how he’ll pay for it until after the election, claiming that “it’s going to be hard for us to figure out the details until we’re in government.”
The BC Liberals doubled MSP premiums when in power.
In total, Wilkinson has opposed or promised to cancel at least $3 billion annually in taxes for the top two per cent and the largest corporations, including the EHT ($1.9b), the speculation and vacancy tax ($185m), and the school tax on houses over $3 million ($200m).
But it’s no surprise Andrew Wilkinson won’t be clear with people: British Columbians know that tax cuts for big businesses and the top two per cent means tax hikes, service cuts, or both.