Bills pile up for B.C. families under Premier Christy Clark

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VICTORIA – Families right across British Columbia are left wishing it was an April Fools’ Day joke as they face bigger bills delivered to their mailboxes starting April 1st, say New Democrats.

“Unfortunately it’s no joke – as of April 1, Premier Clark is jacking up your hydro bill another six per cent,” said New Democrat leader John Horgan.

“Ms. Clark is bankrolling her tax cut for millionaires by grinding more money out of middle class families who are already squeezed.”

New Democrat spokesperson on B.C. Hydro Adrian Dix noted the hit to people’s wallets from hydro bills.

“The average B.C. Hydro residential bill will grow by another $70 this year. Larger families or people in rural areas will be on the hook for even more,” said Dix.

“During the election, Christy Clark promised that she would keep hydro rates low. But right after, they announced a five year plan to hike rates by 28 per cent. Between Christy Clark becoming premier and the end of this plan, average families will be paying $459 more per year on their electric bill. Sadly, families are paying more are getting less. This is another middle-class tax increase, plain and simple,” said Dix.

“On top of the latest hydro rate hike, B.C. families have also seen medical premiums more than double, car insurance rates increase, and even camping fees are going up. Plus, ferry fares go up once again on April 1. That’s a 70 per cent hike on major routes and more than double on some minor routes,” said New Democrat finance spokesperson Carole James.

“B.C. families deserve a break,” said James. “Instead, Christy Clark and the B.C. Liberals gave a $230 million tax break to millionaires.”

Statement from Adrian Dix on need for Site C to be referred to the utilities commission

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New Democrat spokesperson for BC Hydro,Adrian Dix, released the following statement about the chair of the joint review panel’s comments on the need for Site C.

“New Democrats have been calling for years for the Site C decision to be put before the B.C. Utilities Commission. The Liberal government has preferred to make a politically motivated decision to press ahead with this $9 to $10 billion project without proper oversight and without good evidence that the power is needed or that the project is in the public interest.

“We are glad to see Harry Swain, someone with a long history of public service, agrees with us.”

Mr. Swain said going around the BCUC was a “dereliction of duty.” Mr. Swain’s full comments are here: