Tuesday's speech from the throne, opening the fifth session of the 39th Parliament, lays out a clear vision to seize opportunities and secure a brighter future for British Columbia families.
"Our government has charted a clear and focused path of growth, despite the instability that continues to surround our province," says Premier Christy Clark.
"The path forward is one that continues to strengthen our economy, that doesn't burden our children with debt, where British Columbians have jobs in their communities and where every British Columbian can prosper."
The throne speech also outlined the government's plan to establish the British Columbia Prosperity Fund from revenues generated by exporting natural gas to Asian markets. The revenues generated would be directed to
eliminate provincial debt and to support additional measures to improve social services and make life more affordable for families.
"We have a transformative opportunity for our province with natural gas and we are moving forward without delay with a strong plan," says Premier Clark.
"By developing this opportunity safely and in partnership with First Nations, BC can create tens of thousands of jobs for families throughout the province and generate $1 trillion in economic activity over the next 30 years. Revenues from expanded natural gas activity belong to British Columbians and must be invested wisely. That is exactly what the BC Prosperity Fund will do."
The speech from the throne also outlines the following important initiatives that will be announced in the weeks to come to help secure the future for British Columbia families:
- A new, integrated organization that will partner with Canada, the business community and educational institutions to make Vancouver the hub for Asian and South Asian corporate offices and investment activity.
- A renewed commitment by government to small business owners, to keep our province the most small-business-friendly jurisdiction in Canada.
New measures to support families, including, Improving access to quality early childhood services, Improving
access and affordability of child care and measures to help families of young children save for post-secondary education.
- Legislation to establish a seniors' advocate and a plan to address elder abuse.
- Improvements for patients in rural and urban areas as well as improvements to primary health care.
- Work to develop a school of traditional Chinese medicine at a post-secondary institution in BC