I have a new report out today on affordable housing in Metro Vancouver. While it’s mostly of regional interest, I think the analysis and framework for housing solutions could have a much wider audience. The report looks at what’s driving the spectacular rise in housing prices in Vancouver, summarizing what we know from a wide range […] . . . → Read More: The Progressive Economics Forum: House price inflation and what to do about it
In 2012, Premier Christy Clark declared that coastal ferry subsidies would not grow under her government:”That is not a sustainable amount of money from taxpayers across the province. It’s just not. You can’t run a ferry system with that kind of le… . . . → Read More: In-Sights: Essential service – ferries or moviemaking?
One interesting topic for a Canadian living in Australia is the manner in which fiscal and social responsibilities are divided between the levels of government. Both countries are big, regionally diverse, and resource-rich (with all the pluses and minuses that entails). As in Canada, Australian states are largely responsible for the big-ticket social programs: including […] . . . → Read More: The Progressive Economics Forum: Comparing Fiscal Federalism in Canada and Australia
Many people believe that BC Hydro’s current job #1 is enabling the delivery of water and cheap power to northeast gas fields. If true, that serves as proof that government policy is being dictated by one favoured industry – an industry that presently e… . . . → Read More: In-Sights: Industry as policy maker or welfare bum
After the Campbell Liberals were elected in 2001, influences of special business interests grew rapidly. Under Christina Clark’s leadership, non-renewable resource companies wield great political power and they use it to minimize regulations and … . . . → Read More: In-Sights: Favoured friends
I am reading budget documents and will soon be writing more about the provincial government’s financial smoke and mirrors but I have initial comments.Natural GasBC Liberals, particularly Premier Clark, are proving to be a fine investment for British Co… . . . → Read More: In-Sights: Truth found in numbers, lies found in words
With land developers, the largest funders of the BC Liberal Party are natural resource companies. They’ve contributed millions of dollars to encourage government sympathetic to their needs. No administration in the province’s history has been as sympat… . . . → Read More: In-Sights: Vanishing revenues
We are pleased to present this rich guest post by a new PEF member, Edgardo Sepulveda. Edgardo has been a consulting economist for more than two decades advising Governments and operators in more than 40 countries on telecommunications policy and regulation matters (www.esepulveda.com). Redistribution, Inequality and the new Federal Tax & Transfer initiatives I want […] . . . → Read More: The Progressive Economics Forum: Redistribution, Inequality, and Federal Policy: Guest Post by Edgardo Sepulveda
Readers of an age to receive a monthly Old Age Security cheque will be thrilled to notice a 57¢ increase in January. As I mentioned on Twitter, cautious saving of that amount might allow a splurge next Christmas. Seniors on OAS get 57¢ more in Jan/16… . . . → Read More: In-Sights: Medical services poverty program
Who knew that Christy Clark would make Gordon Campbell look like an effective, if somewhat dishonest, Premier. #bcpoli— Norm Farrell (@Norm_Farrell) December 4, 2015Did gas industry get a good deal when they bought a government? You betcha! #bcpo… . . . → Read More: In-Sights: When industry buys a government…
Postmedia is a company in trouble. It cannot sustain crippling debt to American debt holders with revenues from traditional advertising, circulation and digital paywalls. One of its responses is Postmedia Content Solutions, which aims to elicit cash in controversial ways. Part of their sales pitch: We’ve learned that advertisers receive increased engagement when pairing their thought leadership with our trusted editorial content.
…You can provide us with content you’ve already created, or you can work with our dedicated Postmedia Works team to develop something brand new!
Writing at The Common Sense Canadian, Rafe Mair described – better than I (Read more…)
by: Kaylie Tiessen & David Macdonald
Small business taxes made the news last week when, during a CBC interview, federal Liberal leader Justin Trudeau suggested many business owners are using the small business tax rate as a de facto in-country tax shelter.
Responding to the interview, Conservative leader Stephen Harper accused Trudeau of taking aim at the backbone of the economy. NDP leader Tom Mulcair called on Trudeau to apologize.
The Conservatives have already legislated a decrease in the federal small business tax rate – from 11% to 9% by 2019. The NDP have promised to make it 9% (Read more…)
The price isn’t right, Corporate profit-shifting has become big business, The Economist: DURING THE TAX-EVASION trial of Leona Helmsley, a flamboyant hotelier, a former housekeeper testified that she heard her employer say: “We don’t pay taxes. Only the little people pay taxes.” These days, multinational companies stand accused of taking a similarly haughty attitude to their fiscal affairs, shifting profits offshore to cut their tax bills…
Shifting profits across borders, Prem Sikka, The Guardian: …secrecy, complex organisational structures, tax havens and profit hungry accountancy firms [are] the key ingredients of the tax avoidance industry. They all come (Read more…)
The audio file below is a recording of my time with Ian Jessop June 17. We talk about LNG and resource taxation, inter-provincial cooperation on resource matters and oil spill response capability.
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Much of British Columbia’s recent political history has been written by a Liars Club sponsored by beneficiaries of corrupt public administrations. One fable claims that BC Liberals rescued the provincial economy in 2001 after a decade of socialist mismanagement. Yet facts assembled by Statistics Canada paint a different scenario.
I’ve previously demonstrated that the NDP (1991-2001) bested Liberal (2001-2014) results in a number of significant areas, including: Gross domestic product value growth, Job creation, Provincial debt management, Natural resource revenues.
Prior to the last election, Jim Shepard, fronting the quadrennial Concerned Citizens for BC, warned that any vote but a (Read more…)
Hansard, May 28, 2015 The notion of a Debt-free British Columbia — hard to imagine when you’ve seen $135-billion increase in debt and contractual obligations under the B.C. Liberal watch. But somehow, in the fantasy world of the B.C. Liberals, you can make the assertion that we will be debt-free; you just don’t have to realize it.
It’s these assertions of reality that, I think, have most British Columbians perplexed. You say we’re going to be debt-free, yet the prospect of that is not even remotely on the horizon. You say we’re going to be the most (Read more…)
Your browser does not support this audioThe audio file above is a recording of my time with Ian Jessop May 12. We talk about jobs and natural resources but we don’t deliver BC Liberal talking points like many others in media.
I urge readers to visit the CFAX podcast pages. Ian has been holding conversations on subjects not often covered elsewhere. For example, at 2:30pm May 12, Damien Gillis of Common Sense Canadian followed my interview and gave important information and insights on the Site C dam, which, at $10 billion or more, may become the single largest boondoggle (Read more…)
Andrew Nikiforuk wrote advice for Albertans in his recent article Eight Steps to Reform the Broken Petrostate: Behave like an owner: Alberta’s oil and gas resources belong to Albertans. The Tories’ “strip it and ship it” approach was not only wasteful, but also environmentally destructive.
…Governments that run on taxes raised from the general population represent their people. Governments that run on resource revenue represent the resource and its multinational extractors.
…The Tories consistently avoided transparency on bitumen revenues, and the impact of volatile prices or mining of unconventional resources on royalties. They gutted their own expertise on the (Read more…)
Following the passing of Alberta’s Conservative party, Macleans writer Colby Cosh described a drawn-out illness that made the result inevitable. Followers of British Columbia politics will recognize symptoms also found west of the Alberta border: Elections Alberta, despite some political and legal controversies, did important work in investigating and documenting the web of illegal kickbacks from schools, municipalities, and other provincial institutions that the Progressive Conservatives had come to take for granted in hinterland Alberta.
Political financing disclosures added to this picture, showing that the PCs have consistently relied on donations from corporate clients of government—contractors, builders, professional associations—that would (Read more…)