VICTORIA (July 16, 2018) – As British Columbians continue to wait for the affordability measures promised to them by the NDP, Premier John Horgan is prioritizing the well-being of his union supporters.
The BC Liberals say Horgan’s announcement of so-called “Community Benefits Agreements” amounts to little more than a political payoff at the taxpayer’s expense. The NDP is also once again trying to pull the wool over British Columbians’ eyes with the deceptive labeling of an initiative that costs more money and only benefits their biggest political champions.
Today’s announcements claws back freedoms for our construction industry, and it forces workers into union memberships. As they have done repeatedly in the past, the NDP once again chooses to give British Columbian taxpayers less, for more.
“We’ve seen how the NDP has managed project labour agreements in the past— costs of the project go up, and taxpayers are ultimately on the hook,” says Jas Johal, BC Liberal Jobs Critic and MLA for Richmond-Queensborough. “If history is any indication, this move will provide yet another example of the NDP not being very good at spending British Columbians’ hard-earned money.”
For example, the Project Labour Agreement model increased the cost of the inland island highway by 38 per cent and resulted in delays and a scaled-back project.
“Excluding qualified companies from bidding on government contracts is unfair, causes needless delays, and inflates costs,” says John Martin, BC Liberal Labour Critic and MLA for Chilliwack. “British Columbians deserve better than this, for projects they care about and are paying for. A deal that is a payoff for past donations to the NDP is simply wrong. We need to see the best price, not payoffs.”
As B.C. approaches the official first anniversary of this government, today’s announcement confirms that the NDP is bad for hardworking British Columbians.