Despite ambitious platform, BC NDP promises $109M surplus if elected

Kevin Milligan

BC NDP Leader John Horgan made some big promises today at a news conference in Vancouver.

She reiterated the Liberals' promise of cutting medical service premiums in half on January 1 and eventually eliminating it all together. There are no tolls on the Sea-to-Sky Highway. Horgan asked about the Port Mann and Golden Ears bridges.

"Those things actually help people who are struggling and I think that is the important thing", he said.

The New Democrat's announcement came just after the Liberals said they would cap bridge tolls to $500 per year for drivers in a bid to attract drivers in the Surrey and Delta ridings.

Runaway housing prices have been an issue in parts of British Columbia and the NDP would bring in a speculation tax that would apply to all out-of-province property owners.

When challenged on how the NDP would pay for any expansion at the Delta-Richmond crossing, Horgan said it would be paid for like any other capital project.

The party says it plans to make good on a promise to offer renters a $400 rebate, but there will be a threshold based on monthly rent.


That spending would spur economic growth and pose no threat to the province's triple-A credit rating, Horgan said.

Lower taxes attract talent, according to Clark, and her government has put away $1-billion to create new housing for those prospective workers. "In fact, everywhere we go in B.C. we hear over and over again how tough it is to find a place to live that people can afford", Horgan said. "It's nearly platform by camouflage".

"It's the platform of a party that has had experience in government and wants the opportunity to do it again and is not going to oversell and is not going to make ridiculous goals that can not be kept", he said.

"We shouldn't be redistributing our tax money to the very rich." said Clark.

The NDP would begin increasing carbon tax on fuels starting in 2019, two years before Premier Christy Clark has said she would resume increases to keep pace with the federal government mandate for nation-wide carbon pricing.

- Rachel Notley says it would be hard for anybody who works for her government to support candidates that oppose the expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline, a project she described as crucial to Alberta's interests.

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