Lt. Governor Judith Guichon reads the speech from the throne in the B.C. legislature to start each spring session.

Lt. Governor Judith Guichon reads the speech from the throne in the B.C. legislature to start each spring session.

Throne speech focus on fuel, food

Premier Christy Clark renews LNG, prosperity fund promises, adds new emphasis on food production and climate change

Premier Christy Clark has doubled down on her election promise to pay off B.C.’s debt with revenues from liquefied natural gas exports, despite delays in proposed projects in the face of a global glut of oil and gas.

“Success is not for quitters,” declared the government’s speech from the throne, delivered Tuesday by Lieutenant Governor Judith Guichon to open the spring session of the B.C. legislature.

“It is not a choice between keeping B.C.’s natural gas industry stable or deciding to grow it,” the speech said. “We must begin to export, or the 13,000 people who depend on this industry today will be out of work.”

One new initiative is a renewed focus on food production, including an expanded “buy local, grow local” effort involving local governments and community organizations. Farmers are to be offered a tax credit for donating food to non-profits, and an agrifoods conference is to be held in Kelowna in November.

Touting B.C.’s economic performance, the speech includes unusual criticism of Alberta, saying it “lost its focus.

“They expected their resource boom never to end, failed to diversify their economy and lost control of government spending.”

The speech restates the government’s intention to implement recommendations from former deputy minister Bob Plecas to hire more child protection social workers and modernize the Ministry of Children and Family Development.

“That work must begin with ending the culture of blame that exists for those public servants with the most difficult role,” the speech says.

With an election scheduled for 2017 and the last full budget before it to be presented Feb. 16, the speech repeats the phrase “stand up for B.C.” that could emerge as a re-election slogan. It also refers to “getting to yes,” a phrase Clark has used frequently in relation to LNG and other resource developments.

As it did before the 2013 election, the government has resumed jobs-themed TV ads focused on skills training and technology incentives.

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

BC Coroners Service is currently investigating a death at Canoe Cove Marina and Boatyard in North Saanich. (Black Press Media File)
Drowning death in North Saanich likely first in B.C. for 2021

Investigation into suspected drowning Monday night continues

Located at 9750 West Saanich Rd., this North Saanich mansion is on the market for $10.25 million. (Realtor.ca photo)
Located at 9750 West Saanich Rd., this North Saanich mansion is on the market for $8.65 million. (Realtor.ca photo)
The five most expensive homes for sale in Greater Victoria

A roundup of luxury estates currently on the market

The Greater Victoria School District and two retired teachers are named as defendants in a lawsuit alleging that a student was sexually abused in the early 2000s. (Pixabay photo)
Former Saanich student files sexual abuse lawsuit against school district, retired teachers

Lawsuit claims student was groomed, abused by retired teacher

(Black Press Media file photo)
Mechanical issues blamed for Saanich car fire

‘Nothing untoward’ suspected, no injuries reported, firefighter says

Sidney's Beacon Wharf
Pontoon company piqued at prospect of public-private partnership around Sidney wharf

Seagate approached to submit proposeal for public-private partnership

Toronto Public Health nurse Lalaine Agarin sets up for mass vaccination clinic in Toronto, Jan. 17, 2021. B.C. is set to to begin its large-scale immunization program for the general public starting in April. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
B.C.’s COVID-19 mass vaccinations expected to start in April

Clinics to immunize four million people by September

Terry Keogh, an RDN Transit driver, used his paramedic skills the morning of Jan. 22 after coming across an unconscious woman along his route in downtown Nanaimo. (RDN Transit photo)
Nanaimo transit driver stops his bus and helps get overdosing woman breathing again

Former EMT from Ireland performed CPR on a woman in downtown Nanaimo on Friday

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam speaks during a daily briefing in Ottawa. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld)
31 cases of COVID-19 variants detected in Canada: Health officials

Dr. Theresa Tam made announces 13 more variant COVID-19 cases in Canada

Daily COVID-19 cases reported to each B.C. health region, to Jan. 20, 2021. Island Health in blue, Northern Health green, Interior Health orange, Vancouver Coastal in red and Fraser Health in purple. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection rate stays stable with 508 cases Friday

Vaccine delivered to more than 110,000 high-risk people

Black Press file photo
Investigation at remote burned-out Vancouver Island cabin reveals human remains

Identity of victim not released, believed to be the owner of an SUV vehicle found parked nearby

Angela Waldick is the new team photographer for the Nanaimo NightOwls. (Nanaimo NightOwls photo)
Half-blind photographer will help new Island baseball team look picture-perfect

Nanaimo NightOwls say legally blind team photographer is making history

School District 57 headquarters in Prince George. (Mark Nielsen, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter)
Prince George school district settles with sexual abuse victim

Terms were part of an out-of-court settlement reached with Michael Bruneau, nearly four years after he filed a lawsuit

Surrey provincial court. (File photo: Tom Zytaruk)
New COVID-19 protocols set for provincial courthouses

The new rules were issued on Jan. 21, and took effect immediately

Dog owners, from left, Marlyn Briggs with Nayla, Marjory Sutherland with Effie and Mick, and Christina Godbolt with Conon walk their pets frequently at the Chemainus Ball Park but are growing increasingly concerned about drugs being found discarded in the area. (Photo by Don Bodger)
Puppy rushed to emergency 3 times after ingesting drugs in Chemainus public spaces

Dog owners walking in Chemainus parks urged to take caution

Most Read