The BC NDP has released its campaign platform ahead of the provincial election on May 9, making a raft of spending promises across all sectors.
Among the 118 pages of information that was released on Thursday, April 13, the party commits to ending MSP premiums within four years, and making all student loans interest free from now on.
NDP leader John Horgan also plans to gradually increase the minimum wage to $15 by 2021, after which it would be indexed to inflation.
The NDP is also promising to build 114,000 rental and co-op homes over 10 years and offer an annual rental home credit of $400 for all BC renters.
Also, tolls on the Port Mann and Golden Ears bridges would be eliminated, by taking $500 million from the LNG Fund.
And, the NDP says, it will bring in $10/day childcare, with no fee for families with annual incomes below $40,000 a year.
Proportional representation vote
The NDP platform also contains the pledge to hold a referendum on changing BC’s first-past-the-post voting system to a proportional system instead.
In a bid to take big money out of politics, it would also ban corporate, union, and out-of-province donations to parties, and set limits on individual contributions.
The platform promises to reinstate top tax bracket for incomes over $150,000 and require real estate speculators to pay a yearly 2% empty homes “absentee speculators” tax.
The revenue from this tax will be used to form a Housing Affordability Fund, to support housing affordability initiatives in BC.
In tech, the NDP say they plan to invest $100 million to expand technology-related post-secondary programs and invest in the tech industry.
And in the environment, the NDP has pledged to ban the grizzly bear trophy hunt, and do everything in its power to try to stop Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion.
Finally, it has also committed to funding the 40% of the capital costs as required for every phase of the Mayors’ Council 10-Year Vision for Metro Vancouver Transportation.
More BC NDP promises
- form a youth council
- give students a $1,000 completion grant
- eliminate fees for Adult Basic Education and ESL
- keep cap on tuition fees at colleges and universities
- allow universities to build affordable nearby rental housing
- close the “fixed term lease” loophole
- enforce controls on rent increases
- pass laws to protect renters during renos and demolitions
- allow municipalities to tax Airbnb rentals
- allow municipalities to rezone areas for rentals
- raise income assistance and disability rates by $100/month
- provide an extra $10 million for youth aging out of care
- provide an extra $8 million/year for women who experience violence
- bring in a Temporary Foreign Worker registry
- appoint a Chief Talent Officer to help recruit tech talent
- ensure every child in BC can learn to code
- offer networking grants to start-ups
- fight tax fraud and money laundering in real estate
- freeze BC Hydro rates
- stop the planned 42% increase in ICBC rates
- decrease small ferry routes fares by 15%
- freeze fares on major ferry routes
- give seniors 100% discount on weekdays
- bring in an endangered species law
- hire extra park rangers and conservation officers
- build new campsites, with BC residents first in line for bookings
- create a new climate action rebate cheque
- create 96,000 construction jobs
- create a Ministry of Mental Health and Addictions
- balance the budget in 2017/18
Daily Hive is your home for BC Election coverage throughout the campaign period. To access our full BC Election coverage click here: Battleground BC.