I would like to reply to Barry Dorval’s recently published letter to the editor. While I applaud Mr. Dorval and his passion for teaching, he is sadly on the wrong track when he implores people to vote for the NDP so they can restore funding for schools and teachers.
One of the realities of politics in B.C. is that the electorate seems to swing far left then right. The NDP get into power and spend like the government actually has money. When the electorate wake up and find out that spending has been out of control, the Liberals are elected and have to make drastic cuts to everything to try and get back to some balance.
I have been in Vernon for 30-plus years. I have really started to pay attention to the B.C. fiscal situation since I retired. Over the last few changes in government, here are just two issues I have observed. The NDP government under Glen Clark really made headlines by instigating the Victoria Island highway and the fast ferries. The Vancouver Island Highway is still controversial in that it was only union companies could bid for it. The cost of building the highway and the benefits were/are way out of line and we continue to pay for it.
The fast ferry fiasco is well known to all taxpayers in B.C. as we are still paying for that $500,000,000 mistake. And that, is just a small sample of where your money for schools went. Your brothers and sisters in the other unions got to the trough before you did. You want funding for schools — there isn’t any. The Liberals are still trying to balance the budgets from the last NDP fiscal mismanagement.
While you are at it, please speak with your local candidate. Mr. Olsen has gone on record saying that the Liberals have ignored our local riding.
Excuse me, but I was here in the ’90s when the NDP government was in power and I have not forgotten the aforementioned $500 million on fast ferries that didn’t work and the billions more on union-only contracts to build highways and infrastructure everywhere but here. What is even more concerning is that 27 of the NDP candidates running in this election have strong union ties and the B.C. unions have donated $5 million to the NDP election fund.
I too have concerns about Liberal programs and their priorities for spending. However, as a business person and a resident of B.C., I am absolutely frightened about the NDP and their election promises amounting to $3 billion-plus in new spending.
This can only mean higher taxes and coupled with promises to suspend, stall, cancel and put up moratoria barriers, businesses will be leaving the province and taking their investment monies with them.
Mr. Dorval, you have asked people to support the NDP. I am saying to you and your friends, elect a Liberal government that will continue with their programs of tight fiscal management, that will bring in new investment and jobs, balance their spending against income and not borrow more money.