Today we had a critical vote concerning the government’s proposed LNG industry.
Both the NDP and the Liberals voted to move Bill 6 – the Liquefied Natural Gas Income Tax Act to committee stage. In doing so, they voted for what I believe is ultimately a Generational Sell-out – one which will cost us the opportunity to forge a new path to develop a 21st century economy for British Columbia.
I stood alone and voted against this bill because it is fundamentally irresponsible.
The government and the official opposition are going all-in on an LNG industry despite a highly competitive market that is many steps ahead of us here in B.C. To catch up, this Bill offers a suite of tax deductions, exemptions and ultimately taxpayer funded rebates to entice industry to invest here. The hope is that we will be able to buy ourselves an LNG industry.
What I worry about is how much it will cost our province. If the bill passes, we will essentially be giving away our natural gas resources in order to fulfill the Liberal government’s desperate and hyperbolic election promise.
Instead of this pipedream, we have an opportunity to pursue a truly 21st century economy, with new investments into education and social services, a focus on new and emerging industries already found in our Province, and taking legitimate steps forward to address our contributions to climate change.
The passage of this Bill does not mean the province will crumble. However, this approach to our economy risks passing on a substantial debt to the next generation – forcing them to bear the consequences and the costs of our inaction today. This is not leadership.
I will continue to advance the only alternative that has been offered to the government’s plans: my vision of a diversified, sustainable 21st century economy–one that will serve today’s generation without burdening generations to come.
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