When it comes to rejecting jobs in northwest British Columbia, NDP MLAs are very consistent in not being willing to support new opportunities in their communities.
“Whether it’s not showing up in Victoria for a vote on LNG jobs, when the mayors of Prince Rupert and Port Edward were there, or not voicing support for significant transportation and infrastructure improvements in Terrace and Rupert, the NDP can’t bring themselves to say yes to jobs,” says Transportation Minister Todd Stone.
Stone notes North Coast MLA Jennifer Rice skipped the vote on approving the Project Development Agreement for PacificNorthwest LNG, and constituents have questioned her explanation that she was attending a signing of an agreement in principle, which was actually held two days later.
“Over the past few days, we’ve announced investments in the Skeena and North Coast ridings worth $84.34 million, with a provincial contribution of $28.55 million, and Jennifer Rice and Robin Austin have been missing in action – they have remained oddly silent, not a peep or tweet of support for projects that will help keep families here in the region as it grows,” says Stone. “It’s like ‘Where in the World are Jennifer and Robin?’ When the NDP have a chance to stand for jobs, for increased economic opportunities for families, the MLAs just stay silent. The Northwest deserves better.”
On Monday, in Terrace and Kitimat, MLA Austin was missing in action for the following announcements:
- Expansion of the Northwest Regional Airport that will help increase the capacity and efficiency of the airport and encourage further regional economic growth;
- Replacing the last remaining CNR level crossing on Highway 16 west of Terrace (known as CN Mile 28) with a grade separated crossing – this will significantly improve safety for residents, tourists and the increasing industrial traffic in the region; and
- Safety improvements at Hwy 37/Kitamaat Village Road Intersection in Kitimat.
On Tuesday, in Prince Rupert, MLA Rice was missing in action for the announcement of critical upgrades to improve Prince Rupert’s drinking water supply infrastructure.
The NDP’s position as the no jobs party isn’t new but rather part of a long tradition:
- The NDP oppose construction of Site C: 10,000 jobs.
- The NDP will vote no to Pacific Northwest LNG: 330 direct operational jobs, 300 local spin-off jobs, and 4,500 jobs at peak construction.
- NDP leader John Horgan has called IPPs ‘junk power’ and the party called for a moratorium: 2,700 people across B.C. including 690 First Nations in small, remote communities are employed in the industry.
- John Horgan calls the Northwest Transmission Line, a “power line to nowhere”. Apparently, the Red Chris Mine‘s 350 jobs are nothing and new mine projects representing hundreds of jobs like Brucejack, Kitsault and KSM are meaningless to the NDP.
- The NDP have called for a ban on log exports: 8,000 people employed in the region by the 450 independent forest contractors that are member companies of the Truck Loggers Association.
“We want all parts of British Columbia to thrive and we’re proud to stand and say we support jobs and finding ways to yes,” says Stone. “The NDP dance in the shadows about supporting the economy, but at the end of the day the NDP always says no to jobs, while we’re the party always saying yes to jobs.”