Provincial budget & finance

Social assistance caseload way up

Mar 15, 2009
In our pre-budget Reality Check, we noted that a recession would lead to upwards pressure on social assistance expenditures. The 2009 Budget notes that every 1% increase in the temporary assistance caseload increases expenditures by $3.5 million (and $7 million for the disability caseload). During a major recession it would not be unrealistic to project… View Article

The wrong kind of stimulus

Mar 13, 2009
I am a big fan of stimulus packages for our ailing economy. But my pitch has been that we need to use the occasion to retrofit our economy to be on a more sustainable footing. So it matters a great deal on what we spend those stimulus dollars. If we launch projects that take us… View Article

Following the money in BC communities

Mar 12, 2009
It is one of those publications that few media outlets will report on, and even fewer British Columbians will read, but BC Stats just released the latest version of its Local Area Economic Dependencies, updated based on 2006 census data. This publication basically asks where the income in various BC communities comes from. In many… View Article

And Another Thing About the Port Mann non-P3

Mar 4, 2009
Now that the government has abandoned private financing of the Port Mann, it’s time to make the bigger but equally sensible leap and abandon the concept of a cost recovery project toll. I’m all for tolling. Unless you are a fan of the queues inevitably created by what can only be described as our current… View Article

Death of a P3

Feb 27, 2009
And so the P3 financing deal for the Port Mann Super-Bridge died, conveniently right when it will get the least media coverage. Here’s the breaking news from the Sun: The province has been unable to reach a finance-arranging deal with the consortium that was to build the new Port Mann Bridge, transportation Minister Kevin Falcon… View Article