B.C. Green Party leader Andrew Weaver and NDP leader John Horgan take questions after signing their cooperation agreement for a minority government at the B.C. legislature May 30.

B.C. Greens exercise their influence on NDP

Renter grant, minimum wage, child care need work, Andrew Weaver says

They won’t defeat the NDP government over it, but B.C. Green MLAs don’t support NDP measures to hand out $400 annual grants to renters and set an arbitrary target of a $15 minimum wage.

Green leader Andrew Weaver says the renter rebate and the wage target were not in the NDP budget update this week because they aren’t specified in the governing agreement between the two parties. And it is that agreement, not any political party, that has the confidence of the legislature to govern.

“What the NDP promised in their election campaign is not really relevant to the situation today, because we also promised things in our election campaign, and the Liberals did as well,” Weaver said. “What is important is that we find those shared values that we can build upon, and that’s precisely what we’ve done.”

Asked Wednesday if Weaver has a veto on these measures, Premier John Horgan said work continues on the shared commitment to universal child care.

“When it comes to the renter’s rebate, we want to make sure that housing affordability is real for people,” Horgan said. “It can’t just be a slogan. The renters’ rebate was a key part of our election platform. We’re going to be working on that with the Greens and others right across B.C.”

Presenting the budget update Monday, Finance Minister Carole James said funding for key measures, including child care and the renter rebate, were delayed because several weeks were lost in the post-election uncertainty over who would govern.

RELATED: NDP’s signature child care promise put off

Weaver said the Greens and NDP have a shared value of making life more affordable, but rent assistance needs to go to people who most need it.

“We don’t think the means to that shared value, $200 million [in renter grants] shared by little bits to everyone, would be effective in getting to where you want to be,” Weaver said.

The fair wage commission is going ahead, but the target is gone because Weaver favours the Australian approach of getting expert input first on how to reach a living wage.

“Maybe the model of picking $15 out of the air, because Seattle did it and the B.C. Federation of Labour said do it, may not be the best approach,” Weaver said.

The NDP’s $10-a-day child care plan is similarly delayed. The Greens prefer universal early child care provided as a taxable benefit, with no cost up front and taxation at the end of the year for those who earn enough to pay.

Just Posted

VIDEO: Government approves funding of $750,000 drug for B.C. woman

Approval comes one day after province announces funding for Soliris on a case-by-case basis

Chilliwack trustee slated to speak at Culture Guard rally

Barry Neufeld listed as honoured guest by group that rallies against LGBTQ discussions in schools

Stalled Langley condo project owes $62 million, receiver says

Builders of Murrayville House sold several units more than once: report

Man who sought refuge in Langley church loses another attempt to clear name

Refugee Jose Figueroa is trying to get a certificate that would say he is not on a terrorist list

VIDEO: Get a sneak peek at the newly renovated BC Vintage Truck Museum

Volunteers have been working around the clock to finish the $50,000 renovation of Cloverdale museum

Pitt Meadows councillor convicted of sex assault resigns from job

David Murray with retire from work with city of Port Coquitlam

3,800-plant grow-op busted on First Nation reserve

Three men face charges after RCMP bust a large drug operation on the Soowahlie Reserve near Chilliwack

B.C. boy’s social media bid to get levidrome in the Oxford dictionary goes viral

‘It’s been five weeks and has totally blown up today.’

Huge grain, potash terminals proposed for Fraser Surrey Docks

Surrey’s mayor is embracing the projects, but Delta’s mayor has concerns about emergency crew access

Whistler venues could see 2026 Olympic action

Calgary is looking to cut down on costs

Michael Buble announced as 2018 Juno host in Vancouver

Awards will celebrate Canadian talent in March

BC Hydro issues storm safety tips

Bulletin indicates “electrical contact incidents resulting in serious injury are on the rise.”

B.C. flaggers rally after colleague struck in Okanagan

Traffic Control Personnel respond to colleague being hit in Lavington

Most Read