The Frontier Centre’s dubious numbers about public sector wages

Feb 28, 2011
As if the Fraser Institute needed any help getting its message in the media, there are now a number of Fraser clones that are preaching the same message.  One of those clones, Winnipeg’s Frontier Centre for Public Policy, has gotten a lot of ink in the last few weeks with a report arguing that salaries… View Article

When everything you ask for isn’t enough – BC business calls for more cuts to labour standards

Feb 24, 2011
Last November BC’s Labour Minister quietly announced his Ministry was conducting a review of employment standards and the minimum wage.  There has been virtually no news coverage on this.  That’s too bad because the results could be important for BC workers.  The recommendations could offer a blueprint for BC’s new Liberal Premier to be chosen… View Article

Fair and Effective Carbon Pricing

Feb 23, 2011
Today, we released a new Climate Justice Project report, Fair and Effective Carbon Pricing: Lessons from BC, by yours truly. I’m excited about getting this paper out into the world, given that climate policy seems to have fallen off the radar in BC – even as we are seeing daily evidence of the impacts of… View Article

An Interesting Spin

Feb 23, 2011
In its latest planning document, BC Hydro is forecasting a rate increase of 50% over the next five years. In fact, earlier BC Hydro submissions to the BC Utilities Commission revealed that rates are expected to increase at that pace for the next ten years, with rates forecast to more than double over that period. Not… View Article

Hats off to you, Mr. McKimm

Feb 17, 2011
In the mountain of material presented with the 2011 BC Budget (OK, much of it was an electronic mountain) there was one remarkable nugget of candor. Each ministry and agency is required to prepare a Service Plan that is published with the Budget.  These were initiated originally to provide more transparency in government work.  Over… View Article

Much ado about the provincial debt

Feb 16, 2011
If you read Vaughn Palmer’s online budget analysis in the Vancouver Sun, you’d be forgiven thinking that deficit hysteria is making a comeback in BC. The title of his online piece, Debt Hits Historic High, disappoints with its blatant sensationalism. Yes, it is technically true that in straight up current dollars debt hit a historic… View Article

BC Budget Commentary: where is the debate on new priorities?

Feb 16, 2011
For what was billed as a no-news budget, the 2011 February Budget is causing quite the splash in the media. In the absence of policy changes to discuss, the size of the provincial debt has emerged as the main issue of debate. Is it growing too fast? Is it going to become a problem when… View Article

Raising the minimum wage: not if but how much and how fast

Feb 10, 2011
While lone voices from the business sector still oppose a minimum wage increase (as in this article in The Province), the minimum wage debate in BC has now firmly shifted past the question of whether we should raise it or not. Virtually all leadership contenders for both the BC Liberals and the BC NDP have… View Article

Christy Clark’s “sustained development”

Feb 1, 2011
A news release from the Christy Clark camp puts its focus on energy policy in BC. While the press release reads as slickly as its candidate, let’s pause to deconstruct its key messages: “British Columbia is in an enviable energy position and we need to take full advantage of the resources we have in the… View Article