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The Columbia Journal
P.O. Box 2633 MPO,
Vancouver, British Columbia,
Canada V6B 3W8
Phone: 604-266-6552
Fax: 604-267-3342
ISSN 1712-3763
Web: www.columbiajournal.ca

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Columbia Journal logoVolume Ten, Number Five January 2005    www.columbiajournal.ca

    Average families would benefit from budget surplus with NDP, says James

    CPP New Service

    With high commodity prices, low interest rates and an improving global economy contributing to BC's bottom-line, NDP Leader Carole James said today that average families must benefit first.

    ”Gordon Campbell has made the wrong choices for BC, and average families have been hurt,” said James. “Taxes and fees have increased, services have declined, and opportunities have been denied. New Democrats would ensure that those people benefit first from budget surpluses.”

    James said that despite growth in the BC economy resulting from high resource prices, low interest rates and a global economic recovery, there is still reason to be concerned about both the short- and long-term economic prospects for the province.

    She said that unemployment remains stuck at seven per cent, higher than when the BC Liberals took office, with 15,000 jobs lost last month alone, and average weekly wages are down. And resource dependent and rural communities still aren't seeing the kind of improvement being seen in urban British Columbia.

    ”After three years of Gordon Campbell, average families are worse off today than when he took power,” said James. “They pay more in taxes and fees for fewer services, their pay checks are getting smaller, they are waiting longer for health care, paying more for education, and they're having a harder time making ends meet.”

    James said that New Democrats would make different choices than Gordon Campbell.

    ”Unlike Gordon Campbell, the NDP will use the projected surplus to put ordinary people's needs first, improving health care, expanding access to education, and improving economic opportunities for ordinary people and communities that have been hit hard,” said James.

    "Those aren't Gordon Campbell's priorities. At every turn he's chosen to reward the few at the cost of the many. With that record, the premier hasn't earned four more years in government. It's time for a change.”

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