Candidates focus on keeping jobs in community

The fact that young people are leaving the province for more and higher-paying jobs was one concern candidates shared their thoughts on.

  • May. 8, 2013 5:00 p.m.

Green candidate Chris George addresses an Armstrong audience while Liberal and NDP candidates Greg Kyllo and Steve Gunner listen.

A broad range of topics took the spotlight as Armstrong/Spallumcheen residents took in the debate of Shuswap candidates Wednesday.

Rural health care, decriminalization, smart meters, jobs, the economy, Enbridge, child poverty, electoral reform, government accessibility and downloading onto municipalities were among the variety of questions posed.

Approximately 125 people packed the Centennial Theatre for the Armstrong Spallumcheen Chamber of Commerce forum.

The fact that young people are leaving the province for more and higher-paying jobs was one concern candidates shared their thoughts on.

“If they want to stay and they can’t that is tragic,” said Conservative Tom Birch. “We have to bring jobs back to B.C.

“We have to keep taxes low, we have to spend smarter, we have to encourage investment in the province.”

Green candidate Chris George says B.C. needs to stop exporting its resources.

“We can do better in our communities with our natural resources. We don’t have to take these resources and give them to somebody else and buy it back from them so they make the wealth.”

New Democrat Steve Gunner agrees with George.

“We’ve taken 30,000 jobs out of the forest industry in the last decade. What we need to be doing is investing in local diverse and innovative jobs…we need to be investing in education. There are other things we need to be doing around making jobs a priority.”

Liberal Greg Kyllo points out that B.C. isn’t alone in the current economic situation.

“The challenges we have in B.C. largely are global.”

Despite the problems, he points out that the province has become less reliant on the U.S. and he pointed to various infrastructure projects that are focused on job creation.

“The value or strength of a nation is reflected on its infrastructure.”

When it comes to Canada’s resources and job creation, Kyllo points out that the Enbridge pipeline will help.

“We need to work our federal government to try to work with our neighbours to get our product to market.”

Birch agrees.

“We are 100 per cent committed to working with Alberta to bring our product to market.”

Gunner says the people need to be listened to on their concerns and the project needs to be better benefit B.C.

“The pipeline is going to go through regardless of what the review panel finds out. But you cannot simply push them (project) across the ground and expect people to buy into it.”

The Greens are dead against the plan.

“The green party position is simple: no tankers, no pipelines,” said George. “There is no such thing as a zero risk pipeline, there is no such thing as a zero risk tanker.”

Another controversial topic raised was smart meters.

“There is so much that can be said on smart meters and non of it is good,” said Birch, who proposes an opt-out option.

George agrees with that option: “We are currently living in the largest uncontrolled experiment ever in terms of wireless technology.”

Gunner says 30 per cent of the 30 people seen in just one day of campaigning indicated they wanted an opt-out option.

“They (smart meters) have been implemented on society with the same degree of finesse as the HST and meat regulations.”

But Kyllo defends the meters.

“It (current technology) is 50 years old. If you can’t measure it you can’t manage it,” he said.


Just Posted

Thunderstorm leaves small fire near Adams Lake in its wake

Wildfire crews in the Kamloops Fire Centre are also fighting a small blaze near Kamloops

Okanagan-Shuswap Weather: Heat, sun and a chance of thunderstorms for Father’s Day

Morning pancake breakfasts and fishing derbies across the region will see sun, showers may follow.

Dedicated Girl Guide leader recognized with Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers

Maryann Brock has volunteered with Girl Guides for 37 years

$30,000 donation for outdoor classroom in Salmon Arm to honour beloved teacher

Funds from Armstrong Regional Co-op to go to the Shannon Sharp Learning Circle

Okanagan-Shuswap weather: Sun and heat continue Saturday

Environment Canada forecasts highs of 30 C throughout the Okanagan Saturday

10 facts about Father’s Day

Did you know that the special day for dads was first celebrated in 1910?

South Okanagan pharmacy restricted from dispensing opioid treatment drugs

B.C. College of Pharmacists alleges Sunrise Pharmacy dispensed treatment drugs against rules

Police seek two suspects and car after stabbing in Kelowna

The stabbing took place on Friday evening on Wilson Avenue. It sent one man to hospital.

Okanagan pitcher tosses second no-hitter of season

Vernon’s Jarod Leroux has two no-nos in his last three starts for the BCPBL’s Okanagan Athletics

B.C. VIEWS: When farmland protection doesn’t protect farmers

Secondary residences aren’t mansions, families tell Lana Popham

Summerland Health Care Auxiliary completes hospital donation pledge early

$1M contribution to medical equipment campaign completed half a year earlier than expected

Letter: Writer argues biosolids will damage water, soil

Turtle Valley residents lost the first battle with Nutrigrow/Arrow Transport when our… Continue reading

PacificSport and SportHealth team up to subsidize physiotherapy for members

The partnership is touted as the first of its kind in Salmon Arm

Bombers down B.C. Lions 33-23 in season opener

Former Lion Andrew Harris leads Winnipeg with 148 rushing yards

Most Read