MLAs Marc Dalton and Doug Bing make a housing announcement at Alouette Heights in Maple Ridge on Friday.

MLAs Marc Dalton and Doug Bing make a housing announcement at Alouette Heights in Maple Ridge on Friday.

News Views: Just saying

You’d think a provincial election was on the political horizon.

Four straight weeks, four provincial funding announcements in Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows.

That’s unprecedented in either local riding in since the Liberal party was elected to lead B.C. in 2001.

You’d think a provincial election was on the political horizon.

On Feb. 17, the Liberals announced a package totalling more than $25 million to address homelessness in Maple Ridge.

On Feb. 24, the province committed $20.8 million for a new elementary school in Albion.

On March 3, the province pledged, along with the federal government, $70 million for improvements to Lougheed Highway between Pitt Meadows and Mission, as well as upgrades to the Haney Bypass.

On March 10, the province announced the B.C. Summer Games will be held in Maple Ridge in 2020, with an expected economic spin-off of $2 million. Later that same day, the province announced, in Maple Ridge, more than $700,000 for small businesses as part of the Buy Local program.

The next day, the provincial and federal governments announced a $6.9 million pump station replacement project for the Pitt Polder with the city, as well as more than $3 million for completing upgrades to Lougheed Hwy.  in downtown Maple Ridge.

All that – more than $115 million for the local ridings – follows funding for an ambulance and school buses here last year.

It’s almost enough to make one forget the 14-year battle teachers fought with the province, and won.

Or the soaring housing market that eventually led to a new tax on foreign buyers.

Or the fact that neither a permanent location, nor temporary one for supportive housing for the homeless has been decided in Maple Ridge.

No such decision is expected before the May 9 provincial election.

We’re not ungrateful for all the projects promised to Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows in recent weeks.

But what took so long?

 

– Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows News