WEB EXTRA: BC Liberals caught up in own spin cycle

Dear editor,

The BC Liberals claim that they are all about strong fiscal management.

Dear editor,

The BC Liberals claim that they are all about strong fiscal management.

At times they seem to almost believe their own spin.

In the last election year of 2009, although many doubted their numbers, they predicted a $497 million deficit budget. By the end of 2009 this had ballooned into a record $2.8 billion deficit — over 5 times as much!

This election year they are predicting a balanced budget and, again, many doubt their numbers. They are counting on overstated natural gas numbers and selling off even more provincial assets.

Selling off our assets is not balancing the budget but it is nothing new for this government. We don’t usually hear about it unless it turns into a corruption scandal like the $1 billion sale of BC Rail.

Taxpayers are still wondering why we paid millions for this non-trial plus $6 million for the legal costs of Basi and Virk when it was already government policy NOT to pay the costs for public servants found guilty.

Equally puzzling is why we paid $16.4 million in tax dollars for pre-election Liberal ads that inflicted their partisan self-congratulatory syrupy spin on us. Isn’t there some post secondary students, small businesses or hospitals that could have really used $16.4 million?

The Liberals keep trumpeting their great business abilities but the truth is we are $12 billion further in debt than when this “fiscally responsible” Liberal government took power. This does not include the $4.1-billion debt in Hydro’s deferral account. Deferred for all of us to pay at a further date but not included in this year’s election budget.

The Liberals made it a law not to run a deficit budget but they have given themselves many exemptions from their own law. I guess it’s sort of like red lights, when it’s not convenient, ignore it.

The BC Liberals have had colossal overruns on many of their recent projects. This includes a budget overrun of $341million for the Vancouver Convention Centre, the roof of BC Place was $414 million over budget while the PortMann/Highway 1 project came in at $1.8 billion over the original estimate.

Does this bother the Liberals? Of course not, according to them it was all “on time and within budget”. Spin, spin, spin….

L. Krainer,

Courtenay

 

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