Clearly, government revenues from natural resources have declined substantially in recent years. This is in spite of rising metals and minerals prices and growth in production volumes. Here is an example.
In any economy, there are winners and losers. Among the winners is Teck Resources Limited. This company, its affiliates and associates have contributed millions of dollars to the BC Liberal Party. It has invested wisely and, as a result, its assets have grown seven fold since the beginning of 2002, from $5 billion to $36 billion.
In British Columbia, taxpayers are losers. So too are the province’s most vulnerable residents: like the single parents on disability who suffer clawbacks of family maintenance payments and have had benefits frozen for seven years. Paul Willcocks commented in Clark’s pension costs taxpayers $76,000 a year, but disability rate increase not ‘affordable’
“Clark said [in June 2014] that she knows the benefits, frozen since 2007, are too low.
“But British Columbia is just too poor to provide any increase. That will have to wait for some unknown future when it is “affordable,” she said…”
If the priority of government is to subsidize and steadily reduce the obligations of big businesses that exploit provincial assets, the day when social services are more affordable will never come.
Categories: Natural Resources