Bait and switch toll reduction won’t help BC Liberals.

From my new post headlined over at HuffPost BC :

“The Port Mann Bridge project has been steeped in controversy from its humble beginnings as an economically prudent plan to twin the existing bridge at a cost of $1.5 billion to what we’ve ended up with today: a completely new bridge and highway project totaling $3.3 billion financed through tolls.

Wednesday’s announcement by newbie B.C. Transportation Minister Mary Polak that the tolls on the Port Mann will be reduced for a period of time with incentives — call now and the next five people get a free Shamwow — is no less controversial than the project itself for one very good reason.

Mary Polak is of course a Liberal MLA in Langley facing an election in 2013, along with MLA Rich Coleman and likely Surrey MLA Stephanie Cadieux. Each has confirmed they intend to run again to the press and it’s very apparent to everyone (except Mike Klassen apparently) that the Liberal brand has been all but blown up by the disingenuous Christy Clark. Quite frankly, these MLAs are going to need every bit of help they can get.

The question is, will a reduction in tolls make any difference at all to hardened voters weary of the endless stream of politicking from Clark, the second most unpopular premier in Canada? I don’t think so, and this is why. The Liberals are using the old bait and switch trick, one they’ve perfected over the last 10 years. Sure we get a discount at first, but eventually we’re all going to be paying — for the rest of our lives quite frankly…”

Check out the rest at

20 thoughts on “Bait and switch toll reduction won’t help BC Liberals.

  1. Well since Huffington Post would let me post this maybe you will let it squeak through here.

    Anyone could have predicted that the Lieberals would and will reduce the tolls on the new Port Mann. This probably was the plan from the start of the exorbitant project knowing that daily commuters wouldn’t be happy when completion day would arrive and they finally realize they face a new $1,400.00 + yearly tax to get back and forth to work.
    Reducing the tolls means that every taxpayer in BC will now pay to subsidize the commuters using the new bridge.
    The Lieberals have proved to be the most incompetent government BC has ever elected. They have enriched the lives of their political friends on the backs of taxpayers by either bankrupting crown corporations and selling off public assets or building money losing monuments. They should be congratulated however for constructing the first ever toll bridge on the Trans-Canada Highway paving the way for other “free enterprise” governments to help enrich their friends.


    1. Of course you are dead right about most of it… I doubt the plan was to reduce the tolls even for a short time but I do know that this will have to come out of somewhere. This highway keeper, the Transportation Investment Corporation will be posting a loss for a long time….and as I said, we still dont know the true cost of this bridge. We still dont know how much Macquarie was paid to advise, we still dont know how much the very lucrative performance bonuses are…. Those are the goodie cheques Kiewit Flatiron get for finishing segments etc on time…. this is why things get rushed, like that disaster of a retaining wall on lougheed… The truth is the contractors rush to meet the deadline to get the big bonus cheque, then the contractor just goes back and does it right. Only problem is this wall was so badly done, it was nearly falling down in front of…

      Bad way to do business but its standard across the industry at this level. Repairing or replacing things here and there under warrenty still costs far less than if they had missed the bonus deadline.

      And your comment will show up on Huff. They always take a while to appear because its one person doing approval of all comments. I have yet to hear from a reader whose comment did not appear after a short while and none have been edited either.


      1. Man your fast! Thanks for the speedy reply!
        Well I hope your right about the post Laila it’s been about 4 hrs since it disappeared from “pending” on the original story about the tolls. The last one I had “pending” on a story about zebra mussels finally got posted after 40hrs. If you want to see some outrageous comments that HP didn’t censor go check out the article on Khadr. So much for censoring hate and violence. Here’s a couple comments “This Christian wants Khdar dead”, “You are correct. Khadr should not have been detained he should have been shot a long time ago. ” . Thanks again.


  2. The election is still over six months away. Anything can happen in that time. I hope I’m wrong, but I’ve counted my chickens too soon in the past and been disappointed. I remain cautiously optimistic that it’s bye bye for the BC Liberals. I’ll believe it when I see it only!
    Just like the little engine that could said, “I think I can, I think I can can, I think I can” believe me, in regards to my statement above I’m saying “I hope I’m wrong, I hope I’m wrong, I hope I’m wrong” BUT

    . . . they are desperately looking for a wedge issue, you can tell, and they won’t stop with this one; they will keep cooking up stuff from now until next year .. they have generally had wonderful support from the MSM in the past and still plenty of people/voters who don’t turn to these blogs and actually get their crap (sorry news) off of the 6 & 11 p.m. time slots, and who don’t have enough critical thinking skills to read into biased news reporting (maybe call it gullability type of thing). Again I’m cautiously optimistic but I’m still kind of worried 😦

    Thanks for the article and at least exposing often some well thought out critical thinking skills.


  3. I haven’t seen it mentioned anywhere, but it is my understanding (via a supervisor working for Kiewit Flatiron on this project) that the contractor’s “on-time bonus” is supposed to be the collectionof the first year’s tolls. If that is the case, the Lieberals are directly shorting the firm, not the government coffers. If this is correct, the Lieberals could make the toll a nickel, still not be impacted, and smell like roses over it!


    1. psop… I did get your most recent comment but have held it back until I can get more info- there is heavy government traffic here today on several posts and I don’t want to tip anyone off.

      email me directly or via my contact page please, I have a couple questions to pass onto your source.


  4. That would be a hell of a thing to confirm, and I’ve heard the same thing too from a source within Kiewit.. however getting confirmation of that has been near impossible. The government will not release the terms of bonuses or side contracts,citing third party confidentiality and the documents I have received were redacted in those portions. Those bonuses are substantial though, huge. From the documents and financials I’ve read through, It doesnt look like any of these extras are included. I just dont see it. Thats why if Christy really wanted to show how transparent she was and committ to a truly open government, she would throw open the books and reveal all.


  5. By the way, this post of my good friend over at the Blog Borg Collective… is an absolute must read for a thorough understanding of how far up shit creek the liberals got us before taking the paddle away to get back out……. you know how I’ve written for years on P3’s and the dangers inherent to governments that undertake them?

    How many countries have now banned p3’s completely because at the peak of payments to the private partner, it can bankrupt an entire country?

    Well NVG has the very scary chart showing the future of BC’s debt load…..

    His post is why I question why the NDP won’t give a forthright answer on their stance on the use of P3’s in sectors other than healthcare. The Liberals have literally bankrolled our province to the ying yang.. good luck to any government taking over making things better for the nest few years… especially in 2014.


    1. No I have heard everthing…. this is Stephen Smarts twitter:

      Stephen Smart‏@CBCSmart

      Finance Ministry admits cut to Port Mann tolls will impact prov finances by $108-mill over 3 years. #cbc #bcpoli

      No kidding. Mary Polak should be embaressed to show her face ever again after her lovely lies yesterday of ” We’ve done the math and it works, ever thing is fine!! ”

      No kidding. Meanwhile, Falcon is spreading his wings on the worlds widest bridge….

      And we aren’t getting a fall session. These people won’t even account for themselves. How appalling. If there was ever a time for a revolution is BC, this has to be it people.


  6. But, but Mary Polak is giving us a week of free bridge crossings! All you people are SO ungrateful and undeserving of the crumbs the Liberals deign to brush off their pants and allow us to eat.
    Bad electorate, bad bad bad.


  7. I figured you may well have heard/seen and were working on it, you’re one of the best.
    Thank you again for all the hard work you do. Our province is much better off with reporters such as you. Forget mainstream. I may look at them, research, but always return to the real media, the ones who will report.


    1. Keep your eye on Dave White.He has ‘the nose’ 😉

      Coming from you, that means so much Curt.Thank you. And thank you for continuing to believe in me,and my work.


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