October 24, 2014

Poll: Only 13 percent say Surrey is “safe”

RCMP Surrey

Vancouver Sun: “Just 13 per cent of Surrey residents rated their city as safe, a starkly lower number than anywhere else in Metro Vancouver, according to a recent poll commissioned by Vancity. Crime is a hot municipal election topic in Surrey. All major mayoral candidates have made it a central plank in their campaign platforms.”

It is often people’s reaction to crime stories in their neighbourhoods, rather than actual statistics, that drive how safe they truly feel, said Shachi Kurl, senior vice-president at Angus Reid Global.


October 22, 2014

Environment minister: B.C. LNG law greenest in the world

CTV: Environment Minister Mary Polak says new legislation governing greenhouse gas emissions from liquefied natural gas plants sets pollution benchmarks that will establish the British Columbia industry as the cleanest in the world. Polak tabled the Greenhouse Gas Industrial Reporting and Control Act Monday, saying B.C.’s emission benchmarks will be lower than any other LNG facility in the world.

Environmental groups have raised concerns about increased GHG emissions associated with extracting and burning natural gas. Many have suggested permitting LNG plants to run with natural gas will blow the province’s legislated greenhouse gas reduction targets, which call for emission reductions of one-third within the next six years. The B.C. limit set is .16 tonnes of carbon dioxide for each tonne of LNG produced. It includes all GHG emissions from the point where gas enters a facility to when it is loaded onto a ship or rail car.

Global: [Polak] said it will test legislated GHG emission targets, which have been set at one-third below 2007 levels by 2020, and the province will also consider cutting emissions in sectors, such as transportation and construction. Polak said the government estimates five B.C. LNG plants will create 13-million tonnes of GHG emissions, adding to B.C.’s current annual GHG emissions of 62 million tonnes.

“It is going to be a challenge, no question. Sure, it’s going to be really difficult but it means we’re going to have to be drilling down more and more on the everyday things that we can do to reduce GHG emissions.” -Environment Minister Mary Polak

Opposition politicians labelled the proposed law an attempt to hoodwink British Columbians about the amount of pollution the plants will emit.

“Saying one thing and doing another, where they claim that day is night and night is day, where they claim that brown is green and that standing up for the environment is what they’re doing.” Opposition Environment Critic Spencer Chandra Herbert

October 14, 2014

B.C. to allow alcohol in grocery stores next spring

CTV: The provincial government says the sale of alcohol in grocery stores starting next spring will be part of a store-within-a-store model. In order to be eligible, 75 per cent of a grocery store’s sales must come from food, and it must be a minimum of 930 square metres. Big-box stores and convenience stores will not be permitted to sell alcohol.

Global: ”[W]e are signalling to the industry how our final grocery framework is shaping up, so they have certainty and time to prepare – and so that the option for one-stop shopping can be available to British Columbians this coming spring.” -Attorney General and Minister of Justice Suzanne Anton

October 14, 2014

Poll: Doug McCallum leads Surrey mayoral race

Doug McCallum 01

An Insights West poll finds name recognition goes a long way for a former officeholder as Doug McCallum holds an early lead in Surrey’s mayoral race. McCallum, who leads the Safe Surrey Coalition, is polling at 40 per cent, ahead of Surrey First contender Linda Hepner (32%) and independent Barinder Rasode (20%) with five weeks before election day.

According to the online poll,  55% of respondents say crime is the most important issue facing the city—a 10-point increase since a survey conducted by Insights West in July.

October 10, 2014

Clark, Virk embark on Indian trade mission

Christy Clark 24

BC Newsroom: “Premier Christy Clark departs today on the India Trade Mission, and will be joined by Minister of Advanced Education Amrik Virk. They will be leading a delegation of over 70 companies and post-secondary institutions to reinforce B.C.’s economic and cultural ties with India, promote further investment in B.C. and expand exports as part of the BC Jobs Plan.”

“Throughout the trade mission from Oct. 9-18, 2014, which will make stops in New Delhi, Chandigarh, Bangalore and Mumbai, Clark and Virk will promote the strength of key B.C. sectors, including liquefied natural gas and other natural resources, clean technology, life sciences, film, digital arts and finance. The trade mission will also showcase B.C. as India’s fastest and most efficient gateway to North American markets.”

October 9, 2014

Kaslo village gets a mayoral challenge


Nelson Star: “Kaslo village Councillor Suzan Hewat is challenging incumbent Greg Lay for the mayor’s seat in this fall’s civic elections.”

“Lay has served two terms as mayor and was a councillor before that, while Hewat has served several terms as a councillor. She topped the polls in both 2011 and 2008. A third candidate is also expected to declare for mayor.”

October 9, 2014

Poll: 87% of BC supports assisted suicide


Vancouver Sun: “A new poll says 87 per cent of British Columbians support assisted dying, while across Canada 84 per cent of respondents think doctors should be allowed to help terminally ill people end their lives. The poll also found 80 per cent of all Christians support assisted dying, including 83 per cent of Catholics.”

“The survey, released ahead of a Supreme Court case hearing next week, was commissioned by Dying with Dignity Canada and conducted by Ipsos Reid.”

October 8, 2014

BC to provide humanitarian aid to Ukraine

Ukraine 01

BC Newsroom: “The B.C. government is providing assistance to the Ukraine with a $30,000 contribution for humanitarian aid and other supports. The funds will go to the B.C. chapter of the Canadian Red Cross Society, which has been responding to the crisis in the Ukraine since the onset of the unrest.”

“Our government, along with British Columbia’s Ukrainian community, is deeply concerned by the loss of life and injury being suffered by the people of the Ukraine as a result of the unrest,” said Premier Christy Clark. “We are contributing this humanitarian aid to provide much-needed medical aid in the region, and hope that a peace agreement can be implemented as soon as possible.”


October 6, 2014

Clark: B.C. requires temporary foreign workers

CBC: British Columbia Premier Christy Clark has accused federal politicians of “tragically misdirected” policies over the issue of temporary foreign workers, as she pushes for the thousands of skilled labourers needed for her envisioned liquefied natural gas industry. The B.C. Liberals also want to mitigate an expected dearth of labour, which will only grow larger if their LNG plans are successful.

“We should not think about people who come from across the world to British Columbia to work as being something less than the rest of us, so my advice to federal politicians is this: If you want to fix the temporary foreign workers program, maybe they should start with changing the name. Call them ‘potential new Canadians,’ because they’re coming here to help us build our country. The fact is that as we’re building (LNG), there’s going to be a spurt in the number of workers that are required. Those jobs will be temporary in nature.” -Christy Clark