CCPA Policy Note

Keith Reynolds’s Blog Posts

Keith Reynolds is a National Research Representative for the Canadian Union of Public Employees. He has done policy work for all three levels of government. Keith maintains a Facebook page in honour of BC cheese.

BC Budget 2015 snapshot: More revenue from MSP, tuition, but less money for public services

February 25th, 2015 · Keith Reynolds · No Comments · Provincial budget & finance

One way to measure a government’s commitment to public services is to see what percentage of the province’s wealth (GDP) the government spends on these services. According to government plans outlined in the Budget Documents: Health care spending will fall from 7.9% of GDP in 2012/13 to 7.5% in 2017/18. Education spending falls from 5.6% […]

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13 years on, BC Finance Ministry finds big problems with its public private partnership program

January 7th, 2015 · Keith Reynolds · 2 Comments · Privatization, P3s & public services

The BC Finance Ministry has produced a report much more critical of Partnerships BC and its activities around public private partnerships (P3s) than might have been expected by a province so committed to the practice. It raises issues of conflict of interest, dubious practices and questionable assumptions in the multi- billion dollar program. The story […]

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Ontario Auditor breaks new ground with review of public private partnerships methodology: BC Auditor says maybe, sometime

January 5th, 2015 · Keith Reynolds · 2 Comments · Privatization, P3s & public services

Last month Ontario’s Auditor General issued her annual report. One of her targets was Ontario’s use of public private partnerships to build public infrastructure. As the Toronto Star put it, “Auditor General Bonnie Lysyk has taken a wrecking ball to the (Ontario) Liberals’ use of private money to bankroll new hospitals and transit…” Lysyk’s report […]

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New BC Auditor General report finds public private partnerships double the cost of borrowing

October 30th, 2014 · Keith Reynolds · 2 Comments · Privatization, P3s & public services, Provincial budget & finance

British Columbia’s new Auditor General, Carol Bellringer, published her annual report on government’s 2013-14 summary financial statements today and it contains some pretty interesting highlights. First of all, and for the first time, the AG has published a comparison of how much it costs the government to undertake projects on its own compared to using […]

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What is the “right amount” for local governments to spend?

October 23rd, 2014 · Keith Reynolds · 1 Comment · Municipalities, Taxes, Transparency & accountability

Just how much money should a local government spend? If you ask the Fraser Institute, the Canadian Taxpayers Federation (CTF) or the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) you will always get the same answer: they should spend less.  Oddly, taxpayers sometimes disagree. The Fraser Institute produced a report this week titled Comparing Municipal Government […]

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Feds and provinces push billions in costs down on to towns and cities

September 18th, 2014 · Keith Reynolds · 3 Comments · Economy, Environment, resources & sustainability, Municipalities, Provincial budget & finance

It is all too easy to get lost in “today’s issue” when we look at things without realizing they are part of a larger pattern that affects our lives. Desperately needed public transit in the Lower Mainland becomes a political football with competing interests and imposed referendums. In the Capital Regional District plans for sewage […]

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BC’s controversial contract obligations dwarf its debt

July 18th, 2014 · Keith Reynolds · Comments Off · Economy, Energy, Privatization, P3s & public services, Provincial budget & finance

Most of the discussion around the delivery of British Columbia’s public accounts this week has centred on debt (Marvin Shaffer makes excellent points in the previous post on why debt is not always bad) and on how BC got the money to balance its books. Something else worth looking at, however, is British Columbia’s non-debt […]

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Quebec’s Auditor General slams highway public private partnership

June 12th, 2014 · Keith Reynolds · 1 Comment · Privatization, P3s & public services

Yesterday Quebec’s Auditor General came out with a report slamming public private partnerships in that province.  The special audit was conducted at the request of the Conseil du trésor.  It looked at the agreement for the seven service areas on Québec’s highways. The following is a summary of the findings. The analysis conducted to demonstrate […]

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Britain and British Columbia now moving in different directions on P3s. BC taxpayers may be the losers

May 20th, 2014 · Keith Reynolds · 5 Comments · Economy, Privatization, P3s & public services, Provincial budget & finance

A dozen years ago when Gordon Campbell’s newly elected British Columbia government decided it wanted to build its infrastructure with public private partnerships (P3s) it turned to England for advice.  The British model for infrastructure shaped much of what BC did in the ensuing years.  Lately, British Columbia and the UK have been going in different […]

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How many will vote in the November 2014 local government elections?

March 16th, 2014 · Keith Reynolds · 1 Comment · Democracy and participation, Electoral reform, Municipalities

In BC’s last local government elections in 2011 less than 30% of people bothered to vote.  CivicInfoBC has a handy list of turnout information for all of our local governments here. I was curious about how this compared to local election turnout in other provinces. I don’t have turnout information at a provincial level for […]

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