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NEWS RELEASE · 25th January 2013
BC NDP
While the B.C. Liberals continue to waste $15 million of taxpayers' money on partisan political advertisements, the New Democrats have committed to end the practice so that valuable tax dollars can go towards real public priorities in communities like Terrace.

New Democrat leader Adrian Dix announced Tuesday that a New Democrat government would pass legislation that would give British Columbia’s Auditor General statutory responsibility to review and approve all government advertising and prohibit advertising whose central purpose is to promote the governing party in a partisan manner.

“Spending $15 million on flagrant self-promotion is a complete misuse of public funds, especially at a time when communities across B.C. are suffering” said Skeena MLA Robin Austin.

“After ten years of Liberal government mismanagement, levels of poverty and inequality are at an unacceptable level. $15 million could have been better spent investing in education by reversing cutbacks to food programs or increasing the number of special education teachers in the Coast Mountains School district and across B.C. Families in my community deserve better.”

Whether improving the availability of services to people with disabilities by adding spaces to Community Living B.C., or providing seniors with much-needed stability by increasing homecare services, the investment of $15 million in to the communities of B.C. could have made a huge difference in the lives of British Columbians.

The proposed legislation would ensure taxpayer dollars are no longer misused for political gain. Under the new advertising approval process, potential government ads – whether on television, radio, print, or online - would have to meet certain standards set out in statute, and in particular, not promote the governing party in a partisan manner.

“For the government to tell us we need to tighten our belts and suffer the consequences of service cutbacks while they waste millions on primetime advertising is simply unacceptable and clearly shows a government that’s out of ideas and not up to the challenges facing British Columbia,” said Bruce Ralston, B.C. New Democrat finance critic. Ralston said New Democrats will introduce legislation in the coming spring legislative session.

A New Democrat government would stop spending taxpayer money on partisan advertising and start spending it where it counts – in communities and on improved services for British Columbians.
Furthermore...
Comment by Helmut Giesbrecht on 3rd February 2013
...having someone talk about unions as the political arm of the NDP without a comment about the business and corporate sector is the arm of the BC Liberals is just a bit hard to take. It is the pot calling the kettle black.

I don't care if the business community under the Concerned Citizen advertises their political preference. It is their money. I also don't care if unions are upset and tell the public why the government is doing something they don't like. It is their member's money. I do care about tax money being use in a blatant partisan political way to polish up the tarnished image of a political party.

I can't even recall the old socreds being as bad as this bunch.
Bill, you're missing the point completely!
Comment by Helmut Giesbrecht on 3rd February 2013
You are missing the entire point. What unions do is called free speech and it is not paid for by our taxes. It is the same thing that the corporate sector does and IS doing right now. It is also regulated so they can't do it during an election without rules. This government does it with OUR money and has blown $60 million in the last two years. That is the issue! If you want to promote your political cause, pay for it yourself. Sixty million dollars is better spent on essential services and Christy's image, or any polititician's image is not essential to the public good.
Really now
Comment by Bill on 2nd February 2013
We all know that the NDP is the political arm of the BC Federation of labour, the Steelworkers, CUPE, BCGEU, the Nurses Union and the Teachers Union. We have all heard tons of these union ads chastising the govt. during labour talks. Dix and company should also put their money where their promises are and ban those ads as well. After all don't union dues also come out of the workers pockets whether they want them to or not.
One more thing Steve.
Comment by Helmut Giesbrecht on 26th January 2013
If they come out with taxpayer funded advertising telling us that the economy is in worse shape than we think , that will be considered a partisan ad. If they come pout and tell us within 6 months that the provinces finances are a mess, that will be true but will still be a partisan ad.

Government advertising should be about health and safety issues and provide information that is essential. Tlling us how wonderful they are is not essential, that's what the media or the MLA is for and now that we have the alternative to the MSM, there is less danger that propaganda will sell.

So if the government advertising budget reaches anything close to the $64 million in the first two years in office, I will buy you a $20 Tim card. Now if the next government introduces legislation that allows the auditor to do what is suggested in the news release, I'll take your $10 Tim card. I may even buy you a coffee to go with the crow.
Steve
Comment by Helmut Giesbrecht on 26th January 2013
Find the totals for the government advertising in the 90's and do the comparison. Then let me know. If the Leader of the opposition says there should be oversight and doesn't implement it when he takes over, he will get the same reaction to his ads as Christy is getting and he will further be pilloried for not implementing the oversight by the auditor general. Nice try though.
I only hope
Comment by Walter Fricke on 26th January 2013
If the NDP ban these ads in BC, I can only hope they ban the Federal ones. Our PM is a master of mid term ads promoting his government and ads attacking other parties. I'm also glad I'm not one of the weak minded that is brainwashed by these partisan ads. When this ban is brought in, I believe the NDP will have no choice but to follow this mandate.
seriously?
Comment by Steve on 25th January 2013
Helmut, assuming they get elected, Ive got a 10$ Tim card that says the NDP starts doing the same thing within 6 months of being elected. I'll add a 20$ donation to the food bank on top of it if they dont come out and say "the economy is in worse shape than we thought" within 3 months of the election

take me up?
It's about time.
Comment by Helmut Giesbrecht on 25th January 2013
Christy Clark has pumped up the B.C. advertising machine

Over two years in office almost $64 million spent, but to what end?

By Vaughn Palmer, Vancouver Sun November 27, 2012