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NEWS RELEASE · 20th February 2013
Budget 2013 lacks credibility and confirms Liberals not up to challenges facing British Columbians

The release of Budget 2013 confirms that the Liberal government has run out of ideas and is not up to the challenges facing British Columbians today, say New Democrats.

"Rather than present a budget that addresses the important issues facing British Columbians today, the Liberals created a document designed to carry them into an election and lacks all credibility," said New Democrat finance critic Bruce Ralston.

"It's 2009 all over again. The Liberals are overly optimistic on the revenue side, and underrepresenting the expenditure side," said Ralston. "This budget relies on at least a half-billion dollars of public asset sales that may or may not happen in the coming year."

Ralston pointed out the Liberals' last pre-election budget promised the government’s deficit would be a "maximum" of $495 million, but after the election ballooned to almost $2 billion and British Columbians were hit with the HST.

“Many British Columbians are struggling to find jobs and to access post-secondary education, yet the Liberals’ budget offers next to nothing for students or those looking to re-train,” said Ralston.

“Critical issues like skills training, climate change and reinvesting in B.C.’s land base are completely missing from the Liberals’ budget. They're cutting healthcare with no word how it will affect patients, and they're leaving B.C.’s resource economies such as mining and forestry behind."

“Today’s budget confirms what the Liberals' own leaked documents have said, that the government has lost the faith of the B.C. public and has resorted to wasting nearly $17 million of taxpayer dollars on partisan ads in an attempt to decrease their serious credibility gap,” said Ralston.

The Liberals have shown they’re not up to the challenges facing British Columbians. Adrian Dix and B.C.’s New Democrats are offering change for the better, one practical step at a time.