MLA’S CORNER: Inflation relief measures fall short

Government’s plans feeling like too little, and months too late, says Lorne Doerkson

Lorne Doerkson is the Liberal MLA for the Cariboo-Chilcotin. (Williams Lake Tribune image)

Lorne Doerkson is the Liberal MLA for the Cariboo-Chilcotin. (Williams Lake Tribune image)

Last week, the B.C. government announced their long-promised measures to fight inflation. Unfortunately, what was supposed to be a cause for celebration and relief left many feeling underwhelmed, with the government’s plans feeling like too little, and months too late.

One of the major pieces of the government’s plan is a rebate through the BC Climate Action Tax Credit. It’s a solid idea, but one that our BC Liberal Caucus proposed six months ago.

Since we first brought forward the suggestion, the government has let two different opportunities to get this rebate out to people pass by.

It makes me wonder what the reason was for the delay. If they had taken our advice back in March, people struggling to get by could have seen savings in early April, or even early July, but now they will be waiting until October.

Instead of taking decisive action, the NDP spent the spring and summer dithering and delaying, while British Columbians watched it get increasingly difficult to make ends meet. Groceries got more expensive, high gas prices cost families thousands of dollars, and yet government still delayed significant action.

We know it’s not just gas that has gotten more expensive — prices for food, goods and services continue to rise, and housing and rental costs are skyrocketing.

And what about supports for families? The main relief measure the NDP announced for families is simply a rebranding of an existing tax credit that government is trying to sell to B.C. families as new money. This is disappointing to see at a time when so many people could use real help.

After months of promises that significant anti-inflation measures were coming, I have to admit that it was disappointing to see what was finally announced. Once again, it looks like government is out of touch with the financial realities people are facing every day in B.C. — it’s time for the action, and the relief, that people were promised.

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