Temporary, supportive modular housing in Maple Ridge. (THE NEWS - files)

No bridge for Maple Ridge, notes Liberal candidate

Budget spends record amount on hospitals, roads

B.C.’s NDP government is bragging that it’s spending the highest amount on capital projects over three years, $23 billion, for roads, hospitals, schools, and housing but the Liberal candidate for Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows is pointing out a new bridge in Maple Ridge is not on the list

Cheryl Ashlie said this week that Budget 2020, brought down on Tuesday, doesn’t mention a bridge at 240th Street over the Alouette River which would provide a second access to Silver Valley and help ease traffic heading to Golden Ears Provincial Park.

Neither is there any mention of a replacement for Pitt Meadows secondary or any post secondary institute for Maple Ridge, nor a youth safe house, Ashlie said in a news release.

“NDP MLAs Bob D’Eith and Lisa Beare claim they have been advocating for our communities for three years, but this budget proves they are failing to get anything done for British Columbians,” Ashlie said.

“While the NDP continue to have no plan for economic growth or how to tackle our communities’ most-critical issues such as education and health care, families here in Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows are going to keep feeling the squeeze of John Horgan’s affordability crisis,” she said.

The government said provincial budgets will be balanced for the next three years and is introducing a new tax on the top one per cent of income earners. It’s also started charging provincial sales tax on pop and is creating a new needs-based student grant, BC Access Grant, of up to $4,000 a year.

Pitt Meadows UBC professor Paul Kershaw said that the NDP has improved housing but the current budget eases up on efforts to build affordable housing. He notes that the government has cut back by 15 per cent the number of affordable units it previously promised.

The slower pace with which the government is addressing housing affordability is happening, “… despite predictions in its 2020 budget (p. 74) that the value of homes will rise over the next few years, increasing unaffordability problems.”

Read more: Latest concept for 240th Street bridge cheaper, lower

Maple Ridge-Mission MLA Bob D’Eith said Thursday that housing starts this year are higher than what the Liberals had projected, and that income taxes have been reduced.

“The BC Liberals would do better to support us as we address their years of neglect, especially on the housing crisis they created that led to the infamous tent city,” D’Eith said.

Read more: Maple Ridge, province talk long-term housing for homeless

“We’ve put millions back in the pockets of Maple Ridge families through child care subsidies and support, lowering the cap on rental increases, and eliminating MSP entirely this year,” D’Eith said.



pmelnychuk@mapleridgenews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

budget

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

Just Posted

Maple Ridge theatre launches fall season at only 10 per cent capacity

The ACT Arts Centre only allowing 50 patrons at performances due to public safety guidelines

Grinch steals Maple Ridge – Pitt Meadows Christmas Hamper Society’s safe

Theft happened early Tuesday morning at organization’s Albion fairground office

Fire at supportive housing on Royal Crescent

Firefighters find chair on fire, building being evacuated

Canada West Golf Championships cancelled due to COVID-19 travel restrictions

UBC, UBC-O, UFV and UVic athletes will not hit the links this year, Kelowna was set to host

B.C. reports 96 new COVID-19 cases, one hospital outbreak

61 people in hospital as summer ends with election

‘Unprecedented’ coalition demands end to B.C. salmon farms

First Nations, commercial fishermen among group calling for action on Cohen recommendations

Earthquake off coast of Washington recorded at 4.1 magnitude

The quake was recorded at a depth of 10 kilometres

B.C.’s top doctor says she’s received abuse, death threats during COVID-19 response

Henry has become a national figure during her time leading B.C.’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

BC Liberals must change gears from election cynicism, focus on the issues: UBC professors

COVID-19 response and recovery is likely to dominate platforms

B.C. could be without a new leader for multiple weeks after Election Day: officials

More than 20K mail-in voting packages were requested within a day of B.C. election being called

Dozens of Canadian venues to light up red in support of entertainment workers

Local facilities among dozens across Canada to participate in Light Up Live

Most Read