Opinion Column

Christy Clark leaves 'honey-do list' from hell for likely premier John Horgan

By Bill Tieleman, News, Views, and Attitude – 24 hours

B.C. Premier Christy Clark holds a post-election press briefing in Vancouver on May 10, 2017. (Nick Procaylo/Postmedia)

B.C. Premier Christy Clark holds a post-election press briefing in Vancouver on May 10, 2017. (Nick Procaylo/Postmedia)

“If you could kick the person in the pants responsible for most of your trouble, you wouldn’t sit for a month.” Theodore Roosevelt, U.S. president (1901-1909)

It was a troubled relationship from the very beginning they were just so different and it only got worse with time.

She called him names in public; used angry, hurtful words; told friends she didn’t trust him and disliked his new friends, who shunned her; and now she’s leaving their house forever.

But before she leaves the premier’s office, B.C. Liberal leader Christy Clark has left the “honey-do list” from hell for NDP Leader John Horgan.

B.C.’s legislature resumes June 22 and soon Horgan will become premier and Clark opposition leader and lots of honey-do list items are troubling.

First, BC Hydro and the Insurance Corporation of BC two large Crown corporations owned by the people and misused by the B.C. Liberals for their own political gain.

"These are two ticking bombs that whoever becomes government are going to have to deal with," ex-senior civil servant Richard McCandless said last year.

And there’s housing unaffordability, with Metro Vancouver setting a new record benchmark price of $967,500 up 8.8% increase over 2016 despite the B.C. Liberals' 15% foreign buyers tax.

Then, there’s lengthy emergency room waits; students in portables or schools that require seismic upgrades; no affordable child care; and the urgent need to improve child protection services after multiple tragedies.

But BC Hydro and ICBC are the biggest trouble twins Horgan has been left with.

BC Hydro has dramatically raised electricity rates up 87% since the B.C. Liberals took power in 2001 as it subsidized both government revenue by $852 million between 2016 and 2018 and independent power producers’ profits.

And then there’s ICBC, which was turned into a cash cow,  with drivers paying high insurance rates while the B.C. Liberals balanced its budgets through ICBC paying “dividends” to government totalling $1.2 billion between 2010 and 2016, while insurance rates jumped 32% between 2012 and 2016.

All in all, Christy Clark may be very glad to leave the honey-do list from hell for John Horgan but there’s no way she and the B.C. Liberals can avoid responsibility for their reckless and damaging behaviour.

And they should fear, not welcome, any snap election.

Bill Tieleman is a former NDP strategist. Read his blog at billtieleman.blogspot.com. Twitter: @BillTieleman