Stephen Rees's blog

Thoughts about the relationships between transport and the urban area it serves

This is a BC NDP Press Release

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I am not a member of the NDP – or indeed any political party. In fact I am bit disgusted with the way the NDP has decided to use the carbon tax as a stick to beat Gordon Campbell. But this press release gives plenty of reasons why we should not even think aboit voting Liberal in either of the two byelections or in next year’s provincial elections

Oct. 24, 2008


Gordon Campbell wants us to believe that he will curb wasteful government spending, but his record shows just the opposite. Time after time, Gordon Campbell has squandered billions of dollars on pet projects and handouts for his friends, funding that could have been put towards lowering child poverty or combating our homelessness crisis.

Hundreds of millions on cost overruns…

    • $400 million in cost overruns on the Vancouver Convention Centre, and it’s not even complete.
    • $560,000 for a fancy, over-budget renovation at the MCFD head office, while at the same time the Campbell government was denying funding to the Mary Manning centre for sexually abused children.

Hundreds of millions in benefits for B.C. Liberal friends and insiders…

    • $327 million this year alone in subsidies for big oil and gas companies.
    • $220 million in tax breaks for banks.
    • Hundreds of millions in benefits for forestry corporations after the Campbell government gave away more than 120,000 hectares of forest land on Vancouver Island and the Coast, with no benefits for local communities.
    • Over $90 million to private liquor retailers since 2004.
    • $23 million in overpayments to B.C. Liberal-linked job placement contractors GTI and West Coast Group.
    • $600,000 that Campbell insider Doug Walls milked from the government, plus the hundreds of thousands spent on special prosecutors and independent auditors required to sort out the mess.

Millions for B.C. Liberal-friendly advertising…

    • $63 million over the next three years for unaccountable advertising from the premier’s Climate Action Secretariat, in addition to the $9 million ad budget in 2008.
    • $30 to $40 million per year for Campbell’s Public Affairs Bureau spin-doctor shop.
    • $29.5 million this year in government advertising, the budget for which has increased by over 150 per cent since 2001.

Millions in pay raises for Campbell’s top advisors…

    • $3 million a year for Campbell’s secretive pay raise for his top executives.
    • $710,000 per year for the 60 per cent pay raise for the Liberal-linked B.C. Ferries board of directors.
    • $460,000 a year for the 500 per cent wage hike for the TransLink board of directors, even though they’re no longer publicly accountable.

Millions on pet projects…

    • $20 million for the ill-fated “B.C. Experience” tourist project.
    • $15 million from the Ministry of Forests for an ice rink in then-Minister Rich Coleman’s home town of Langley.
    • $10 million for the premier’s ill-conceived “Conversation on Health”.
    • $6.4 million spent backing out of the B.C. Liberals’ deal to privatize the Coquihalla.
    • $4.2 for Leading Edge B.C., which was supposed to promote the high tech sector but was plagued by accountability issues, before it was brought back under public control in 2006.

Written by Stephen Rees

October 24, 2008 at 7:16 pm

Posted in politics

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