BC Election 2017: The irony is rich when it comes to Clarks concern over BC’s credit rating.

That face-palm kind of moment when Premier Christy Clark and the BC Liberals use the threat of losing the provinces Triple AAA credit rating to attack the NDP…

…just months after the Liberals were warned  twice in a year, that escalating BC Hydro debt threatens the provinces Triple AAA credit rating… ( But hey, the premier doesn’t want to talk about that now, does she?)

April 2016: 

http://vancouversun.com/opinion/columnists/vaughn-palmer-credit-report-sounds-alarm-over-bc-hydro-debt

VICTORIA — Amid an otherwise favourable credit report on British Columbia last week, the Moody’s Investors Service sounded an alarm about a 125-per-cent increase in debt at government-owned BC Hydro.

“BC Hydro’s total reported debt has risen considerably since 2008, increasing from $8.1 billion as of March 31, 2008 to an estimated $18.1 billion as of March 31, 2016,” wrote Moody’s.

Nor is that the end of the rising tide of red ink, the debt-rating agency went on to note in the report dated April 7.

Hydro’s debt load “is expected to continue to rise over the medium-term as the utility moves forward on the construction of an $8.8 billion hydroelectric dam at Site C.”

The current projection is for Hydro to add a further $4 billion in debt over the next three years to cover some of the capital cost on Site C as well as upgrades of the existing network of generating stations and transmissions lines.

All cause for concern, according to Moody’s, because Hydro’s financial metrics — the measures of its ability to go on servicing its own debt — “are among the weakest of Canadian provincial utilities.”

But wait…. there is more.

January 2017:

http://vancouversun.com/news/politics/b-c-s-credit-rating-at-risk-as-hydros-debt-grows

VICTORIA — A top investment firm continues to sound alarm bells about B.C. Hydro‘s finances, saying the Crown electricity provider’s rising debt level is a risk to B.C.’s credit rating….

…projects like Site C are pushing up B.C. Hydro’s debt levels, and adding to concerns about the province’s overall “high debt burden” compared to its peers, Moody’s also wrote in its credit opinion.

B.C. Hydro’s debt has increased from $8.1 billion in 2008 to a projected $18.1 billion last year, and there is a further $20 billion expected in the future for infrastructure projects, a $2-billion annual upgrade program and the Site C dam.

“The anticipated increase in debt continues to pressure the province’s rating since it raises the contingent liability of British Columbia,” wrote Moody’s, which has expressed similar concerns the past three years. Hydro’s debt is ultimately backstopped by taxpayers if the situation worsens, noted Moody’s.

Hydro does have the flexibility to raise electricity rates to pay its debts, but its finances are nonetheless “among the weakest of Canadian provincial utilities,” added Moody’s.

Finance Minister Mike de Jong said Moody’s is “appropriately mindful” of Hydro’s big projects and their impact on the province.

 

 

Fast forward to…

April 2017

After ignoring the very real and continuing threat to our provincial Triple AAA credit rating thanks to escalating BC Hydro debt…This from CKNW, today:

Eliminating tolls on Port Mann, Golden Ears bridges will threaten B.C.’s credit rating

It’s a warning from the BC Liberals: “They’re going to have to find the money somewhere. Our plan is one that means we are reducing costs affordably. It’s a responsible plan, it’s costed, and its not going to mean anyone’s taxes are going to go up because we know we can afford it.”

Leader Christy Clark says not only is the BC NDP plan to get rid of tolls expensive and irresponsible, but her party claims there are hidden costs the NDP is not talking about.

Specifically, the BC Liberals say eliminating tolls would threaten B.C.’s AAA credit rating.

 

Sooo… let me make sure I have this right.

Forcing BC Hydro to borrow money to pay your government dividends has been acceptable to you.

Vowing to get a $9billion+ project past the point of no return made sense to you.

And escalating debt at BC Hydro threatens our Triple AAA credit rating to the point you’ve been warned for three years and have done nothing but help make it bigger..

And now the sky is falling?

Screenshot 2017-04-19 at 11.35.53 AM

 

( For the record, I am not a fan of toll removal & think it makes much more sense for Metro Vancouver traffic flow, congestion & future infrastructure planning to move to a minimal toll on each crossing. But that’s something we can chat about later)

 

 

 

 

13 thoughts on “BC Election 2017: The irony is rich when it comes to Clarks concern over BC’s credit rating.

  1. In the fertile field of fact reversal George Orwell would have to rewrite 1984 upon reading any pronouncements by this modern version pf Pinocchio!, Being utterly incapable of telling the truth does give her the advantage of consistency, the liar’s stock-in-trade.

    Liked by 3 people

      1. The believer.

        A thousand liars with a single skeptic who is passionate about the truth will never achieve the cohesion to become anything truly dangerous beyond perhaps the level of a riot.

        A single liar with a thousand credulous believers is a truly horrifying thing, because not only are they all following a single credo, but the believers can grind down even the most resistant of people by their faith and their numbers, and are likely to swell in numbers.

        Like

    1. paul

      she has been heard to say “people who don’t want more debt , don’t live in reality” !!! What more does one need to know , Yoga on Burrard St. bridge.

      Like

  2. r

    It is a mass diversion deflection,transferring the narrative to opposing party.like blaming for hacking or destroying party election signage.
    Watch out for cheap shots just before election day to throw people off , no time to react.
    Cancel Site C save 10 billion dollars
    Cancel Massey bridge save 4 billion (4000 million) and biule tunnel for 1 billion dollars

    If one is not going to vote for something then vote against something?

    How is BC to pay-
    Cancel Site C – save 10 billion dollars and fire up burrard thermal generator and use others like wind ,solar ,geothermal.
    Cancel all BCHydro IPP contracts and save almost 1 billion (1000 million) a year.Because they are prcied up to 300 % over open market rates.
    Raise corporate tax 1 percent.
    Raise top tax bracket 2 percent.
    Cancel Massey bridge -save 4 billion dollars and build 1 billion dollar tunnel instead.
    review raw log export and have value added processing here at home.
    Raise property foreign tax to 20%,from current 15%
    Promote tourism industry
    Minimize political donations as they start at 75% refund (400 dollars gets you a 300 dollar tax credit)
    Open a syngas(LNG to gasoline) plant to keep gas prices lower and remove reliance on out of area refineries.

    call premier out on moodys BCHydro debt concerns

    Liked by 2 people

  3. e.a.f.

    OMG, when I saw that on the news I almost spewed my dinner in laughter. Really the ignorance. gives a whole new meaning to the word chutzpah.

    she and the B.C. Lieberals run up a provincial debt of over $100BILLION and they “worry” about any actions of the NDP which might run up “debt”. The NDP has suggested proposed changes which will benefit the average person, i.e. removing tolls. That will not only save people a lot of money each month and put into the economy, but it will save them thousands of hours a year of not sitting in traffic jams. Might even help the enviornment. Just think people wouldn’t have to line up on busy routes because they can’t afford tolls. Hell if every one moves over one bridge we won’t need a 10 lane bridge to no where. Come to think about it, no one mentioned the $9 BILLION for the dam or the $3 billion for the to nowhere bridge, plus all the millions Christy tosses to her supporters.

    While Christy was swaining around the world, hiring private jets and using helicopters so she could travel with her video guy she and de jong weren’t worried about debts, just having fun.

    Lets see when ell gordo had the ferries in Germany built, the B.C. Lieberals borrowed the money at 10% from the German banks. Like that was a waste, when they could have gotten a 3% interest rate. Then el gordo got an extra $750 Million, charged it to the B.C. Ferry corp. and called it a balanced budget when he put the money in General Revenue. No one thought about debt then.

    when el gordo had B.C Hydro spend a billion on stupid meters no one thought it was debt. When el gordo and the B.C. Lieberals signed hundreds of run of the river project deals to buy electricity for 10 cents a kwh and sell it for 3 cents for 25 years no one was talking debt. of course these actions worked really well for el gordo, the B.C. Lieberals and their financial supporters. Now its no different with photo op jean queen Christy Clark. if its spending money to enhance the bank accounts of her and her supporters its not debt. If Horgan and the NDP suggest making life easier for working men and women, it bad debt and the whole basket could go up in smoke.

    some one ought to tell jean queen photo op queen Christy and the black glass guy we aren’t buying into the b.s. They ran up the debt. they took away services from people of this province. they are tolling, feeing, etc. the rest of us to death. De jong and Christy need a new schtick to sell.

    Like

  4. G. Barry Stewart

    Being a Fraser Valley (south) resident, I love the idea of toll-free crossings… or at least levelling the playing field. Not being a BC Liberal backer, I cringe when I HAVE to take the Port Mann and I avoid it if at all possible. If we need a family outing, 90+% of the time, we stay on our side of the river.

    If we “need” the ocean, our quickest fix is found in Bellingham… where part of our purchases include a tank full of road-tax-free fuel. Coming back across the border — on a day trip — the border agents typically don’t even flinch on purchases of $200 per person, though at the very least, PST and GST should be collected, just as it would be by BC merchants.

    I’ve got to think we’d do more east-west travel and keep more dollars in BC if the Port Mann were toll free. I’ve got to think there would be more north-south commerce and travel between Surrey/Langley and Maple Ridge if the Golden Ears bridge were toll free. I’ve got to think toll free would benefit truck operators, who are a pillar of our economy.

    Focussed tolls put a crimp in commerce and the free flow of traffic.

    So many bridges (and highways) have been built without ever being tolled. Highway 17 and the Alex Fraser are two recent ones. Mission-Abbotsford drivers used to cross on the old train bridge before the 4-lane crossing was built, toll-free. Agassiz-Rosedale drivers took a ferry before their toll-free crossing was built. I’m not sure about the Oak Street bridge but all the other bridges between Richmond and the north side were built toll-free, as were the False Creek bridges and the Georgia Viaduct.

    How were they paid for? General revenue.

    I can see raising the regional fuel tax by a cent or two, to help cover new infrastructure and maintenance — though there needs to be a way to ding the electric car drivers as well (perhaps a higher annual licence fee). Tolling requires staffing, doing essentially a useless job, just like those staff who collect MSP fees.

    First things first, though: build economically. The $3.5 billion blown on the Port Mann (also proposed for the Massey crossing) was ridiculous.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. e.a.f.

    The B.C. Lieberals must be getting nervous. Long time federal liberal strategist and blogger Warren Kinsella has wadded in on the B.C. election and has gone for Horgan “throat” so to speak. Of course Warren being a good friend of Ms. Mills and not unacquainted with Christy’s ex, they must feel they have to pull out all the stops. Referring to Horgan as a sexist really does make me laugh. I suggested Warren K. have a read of your and Norm’s blog for the full facts on B.C. along with the articles regarding the dead children in care, et.c

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Laila Yuile

      Warrens a huge Christy fan and few people in BC even know or care who he is, much less read him unless they are a supporter of the BC Libs.

      Much ado about nothing considering the source.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I’ll tell you after watching the debate yesterday, I have questions. Let’s zero in on the softwood treaty after we address jobs. Number one: The unemployment rate where I live (the interior) is currently sitting at 8.4%. Now, I had made a mistake and used an earlier stat which said 8.8%. |The Liberal friendly shill screeched back that he could not believe it was as high as it was until I gave him the website. At that time crickets and the deafening sound of silence. I pointed out that over 100 people in Lafarge in Kamloops were given pink slips, Britco in Penticton laid off their entire staff, the Kelowna Hospital laundry workers were sent packing, a smelter that would have employed many in Golden was sent south and over 200 lost their jobs in Merritt after yet another mill was shuttered. Speaking of mills, Christy believes that first praising Donald Trump and insulting Barack Obama was a good move, only to recant, castigate Trump (thereby offending both main parties in the US) and infer that her stupid, sabre-rattling comments were a high mark in international diplomacy. It took the Federal Government and a stroke of good fortune to “re-direct some (not all) of the US policy. One can hope that “the Donald” doesn’t hear about Christy’s hare-brained foray into geo politics. We simply cannot afford to let this mentally handicapped chimpanzee and her sycophants retain power.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. If you vote the person not the party you don’t understand our lousy system. A scarecrow with the right party is better than Barack Obama, hell Michelle Obama, with the wrong one.
    A few years ago I was about to cross the street to an all candidates “debate” when a guy came to the door, lost. He had a bottle of single malt Scotch whiskey with him. I never made the all candidates meeting. Ever since when there’s an all candidares meeting I just sit by the front door and hope. Even if the guy with the booze never returns it’s time better spent than crossing the street!

    Like

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