B.C. ELECTION 2017: Site C megaproject fuels election jobs debate in campaign - InfoNews

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B.C. ELECTION 2017: Site C megaproject fuels election jobs debate in campaign

NDP Leader John Horgan, right, manoeuvers a tire while operating a boom truck as student Lee Taylor gives him guidance during a campaign stop at the International Union of Operating Engineers Local 115 Training Centre in Maple Ridge, B.C., on Tuesday April 18, 2017. A provincial election will be held on May 9.
Image Credit: THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
April 18, 2017 - 2:42 PM

Christy Clark used the Site C dam megaproject in northern British Columbia as a backdrop today to campaign on the Liberal party's record on jobs and economic growth.

The Liberal leader says the multibillion dollar BC Hydro project under construction near Fort St. John will mean clean energy and employment for the province.

NDP Leader John Horgan says he wants the project sent to the B.C. Utilities Commission for a review on whether it should proceed.

The dam is two years into construction and has been approved by the federal government, but Horgan did not directly answer a question as he campaigned in North Delta on whether a review by the utilities commission could realistically stop the project.

He says every project ever built before Site C underwent a review by the independent regulatory body, but this time Clark pushed ahead with the project and the public has a right to know whether there is a solid business case for it.

Green Leader Andrew Weaver started his campaign for the May 9 election in Victoria, releasing a health-care platform that aims to promote wellness, emphasize prevention and primary care, create a mental health strategy, develop quality end-of-life care, and protect children.

The plan would include $100 million for an integrated primary-care system using teams of health-care professionals, such as nurse practitioners, physiotherapists and midwives to enhance access to family doctors.

Weaver says shifting B.C.'s health-care focus from acute care to wellness and preventative care, along with his party's other measures, will make health services more accessible and affordable as B.C. population ages.

"Building a model that emphasizes preventative and integrated care and makes plans for the future will enable us to strengthen our public health care system and enable better health for all British Columbians," he said.

Horgan also announced an expanded apprenticeship and trades training program under a New Democrat government. By investing in tomorrow's workforce, Horgan says they will fill the 96,000 jobs that would be created with school, hospital, highway and home construction.

"Apprenticeships are the best way to train the workforce of tomorrow," he said in a statement.

"With every school, hospital, highway and home we build, we will make sure there are opportunities for apprenticeships and trades training."

Clark says Site C has been a job creator for the province, with more than 275 B.C. businesses involved in the dam's construction.

"Site C means thousands of jobs and 100 years of clean, affordable, and reliable power — enough for 450,000 B.C. homes," Clark said in a statement. "It means being ready to meet increasing demand as Canada's leading economy continues to grow."

News from © The Canadian Press, 2017
The Canadian Press

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