BC election: Key developments from Day Two on the campaign trail

Posted April 16, 2017

It promises to pay for the new spending by raising large corporate income tax by one per cent, imposing an "empty housing speculation tax" and reinstating a two-per cent income tax increase on high-income earners removed by the BC Liberal government in 2015.

The NDP has promised to eliminate MSP and in its last budget, the B.C. Liberals said it would cut payments in half.

All of the measures to make life more affordable for British Columbians add up to some serious cash: the party is pledging $717 million in new spending for the current fiscal year.

Part of the influx of cash will come from draining $500 million from what it calls Christy Clark's liquefied natural gas "fantasy fund". The B.C. NDP responded by promising to slash tolls on both the Port Mann and Golden Ears bridges. It would be implemented first in Metro Vancouver, where housing affordability has become a pressing concern, though other jurisdictions could opt in later, the party said. Horgan said he wouldn't change a Liberal plan to reduce the small business tax.

The two-per-cent tax on a property's assessed value would give the government $200 million a year in additional revenue, the party said. The Liberals' projected a surplus of $295 million in the 2017-18 budget they released before the election.

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The platform also includes plans for $10-a-day childcare and an annual $400 rebate for renters.

Horgan said their platform will create 96,000 jobs through investments in schools, hospitals, transit and infrastructure.

De Jong says the NDP's plan "is not possible" unless one of two things happen: "an operating deficit, or massive tax increases", adding it's not sustainable and can not co-exist with a balanced budget. "In fact, everywhere we go in B.C. we hear over and over again how tough it is to find a place to live that people can afford", Horgan said.

Taking questions at Government House, Clark said her party's platform is the only one that is costed and won't require tax increases.

"We would all like to be home in Kelowna a lot more than we get to but that comes with the responsibility of governing the whole province", Clark said.