Alberta Premier Rachel Notley (Black Press files)

Trans Mountain court action continues, John Horgan says

Federal takeover doesn’t change oil spill risk to B.C. coast

The B.C. government is carrying on with its reference case against the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion, Premier John Horgan told Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in an early-morning phone call Tuesday.

Horgan told reporters in Victoria the federal government’s takeover of the project changes the legal situation, but his contentious legal action isn’t aimed at any specific project. It’s about the province’s jurisdiction to regulate bitumen transport by pipeline, rail or road and B.C. lawyers have advised that it can proceed, he said.

The federal takeover of the existing line makes the Trudeau government “totally accountable” for risks of a tanker spill, and “allows me to have more candid conversations with the owners of the pipeline,” Horgan said.

B.C. Liberal leader Andrew Wilkinson said taxpayers will be the owners of the project.

“John Horgan picked a fight with Alberta and provoked a constitutional crisis with Ottawa over this project and this is now the embarrassing result,” Wilkinson said. “Horgan and the NDP will continue to play politics with British Columbia’s future, and this time it will cost us billions.”

Alberta is putting up to $2 billion towards construction of the project, and work is underway to get construction going, Premier Rachel Notley said Tuesday.

Notley held a jubilant news conference in front of the legislature in Edmonton after the federal government announced it is buying the 65-year-old oil pipeline from Alberta to the B.C. coast.

“It’s very possible we might not have to spend a cent of it,” Notley said of the financial backing, which would be payable only when oil begins to flow from the twinned pipeline. Any money put toward construction would be converted into an equity stake in the federal project, she said.

Notley said the federal takeover gives the project “federal Crown immunity,” which casts doubt on B.C.’s reference case to test the province’s jurisdiction.

Just Posted

Still room for golfers in KidSport tournament

Inaugural KidSport Greater Vernon Golf Tournament goes Thursday at Vernon Golf and Country Club

Arrested suspect connected to string of North Okanagan robberies

Man arrested after failed robbery at Enderby store may be involved in four other such crimes

Upper Room Mission grieves sudden deaths of two Vernon women

Mehgan and Teresa died in Vernon earlier this month — one from a fatal overdose, the other, a casualty of a high-risk lifestyle

Elected officials lobby for government grants for Vernon cultural centre

Planning process underway for the $40 million project

Homelessness, open drug use continue to plague Vernon

Last Wednesday a homeless man was observed occupying the entrance to the City of Vernon’s bylaw office

VIDEO: Trans Mountain expansion project gets green light, again

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced the decision in Ottawa on Tuesday afternoon

South Okanagan retired nurse’s petition read in House of Commons

Teri McGrath wants provinces to implement no-fault system for medical errors

Grieving B.C. mom hopes Facebook message leads to new investigation into son’s Surrey homicide

Criminal Justice Branch didn’t lay charges, concluding no substantial likelihood of murder or manslaughter conviction

Hergott: Contribution and Expectation of a will

Lawyer Paul Hergott continues his column on wills

B.C.’s measles vaccination program gains traction in May

More than 15,000 doses of the MMR vaccine has been administered across the province

B.C. farmers concerned Agricultural Land Reserve changes choking their livelihood

Dozens voice concerns at special meeting hosted on Vancouver Island

Beloved South Okanagan baker dies

Beloved baker Ben Manea died suddenly on June 15, bakery to operate for one final week

Knife-wielding man robs South Okanagan pizza shop

RCMP are looking for the suspect who was wearing a ski mask

UPDATE: Two-year-old involved in Chilliwack pool drowning has died

Toddler was reported to not be breathing as air ambulance called out Thursday afternoon

Most Read