The $600 million Loss That No One is Talking About – The BC NDP Government

The $600 million Loss That No One is Talking About

A $600 million yearly  loss.

Six hundred million dollars.

$600 million is the amount the BC NDP government is actively trying to remove from the BC economy each year, through their 2018 budget, yet no one is talking about it.

Why?

Have they yet to figure it out?

Are math skills and economic skills so poor?

Or is ideology at the cost to the average British Columbian more important?

Let me fill you in.

The BC 2018 budget revealed a speculation “tax”. However, it isn’t a “tax”, it is a penalty. The properties affected already pay property taxes at about 30% more than a British Columbian resident who receives a “grant”; yes a nifty two tiered pricing that seems to never be questioned. This is a “speculation” tax ON TOP. But it isn’t a tax, is it? “Sin tax” or “luxury tax” are taxes that are applied at the point of sale. The consumer knows openly the financial commitment that is required of them and enter into the purchase and taxation in good faith.

This “speculation tax” tax is a fine, just like you are being fined for breaking the law. It is ALL it can be. This is a tax for breaking a law that doesn’t exist. The BC NDP government are trying to create laws of their own. The BC NDP government are making up imaginary and discriminatory laws, under the guise of “policy”, that breaks the Canadian Charter of Rights that ensures all Canadians are equal, have equal opportunity, and can live free from discrimination. The BC NDP Government are concocting fake laws that make it okay to fine people from out-of-province who LEGALLY bought property, in good faith, in their province years ago. The BC NDP government are trying to cleanse their province of the dirty out-of-province owners that they deem criminal for having invested in the province of British Columbia; “criminal” is all we can be as the owners are being fined. FINED.

So, The BC NDP government ramped up their xenophobic rhetoric, stood on their virtual soap boxes, and shouted to their people that the BC affordable housing crisis is the fault of “out-of-province” and foreign property owners. Every one of the 4.8 million BC residents are being destroyed by the “out-of-province” and foreign owners according to the government. And so they ramped up the campaign of dislike.

But here is what the BC NDP government didn’t tell you, this is the story of a $600 million per year loss.

Financial Post link: http://business.financialpost.com/personal-finance/mortgages-real-estate/fear-and-uncertainty-out-of-province-homebuyers-could-rush-to-sell-if-b-c-slaps-speculation-tax?fb_comment_id=1689902597766541_1690583327698468&comment_id=1690583327698468#f2522e3d4da2a62

According to the Financial Post story on March 12, 2018 by Geoffrey Morgan, there are approximately 15,000 residential properties targeted by this speculation tax. The government has fed a narrative to their population that these homes are just sitting empty while owners wait for the value to increase. Interestingly, the government is wrong on both counts. The properties were not bought for the purpose of speculation (some have been owned for generations). Nor do the properties sit empty, rather they are residences used in conjunction with other properties in other provinces. These owners identify as bi-provincial, and the ability to live freely anywhere in Canada again is covered under the Charter. In this era of self identity being so protected by the federal government, it is shocking that a provincial government would penalize these owners as identifying as bi-provincial; even more shocking for a left leaning government to discriminate against a population as to how they self identify.

The government may be fine with discriminating against the “bi” community, but what they are also doing is harming the ones that they profess to help.

What the BC NDP government have failed to tell their population, for fear that it will undermine their ideological xenophobic dislike of “out-of-province” owners, is that “out-of-province” property owners are actually INVESTORS. We invest in the province, we add to the economy, with “out-of-province” money. Through owning property, each year we spend a considerable amount of money on product and services in BC. For us personally, it is around $40K annually.

Here is the math.

15,000 targeted homes  X  $40,000 spent per household per year = $600,000,000 of investment into the BC economy with “out-of-province” dollars.

$600 MILLION per year…….and this is on top of the $1.4 billion in the form of the yearly Alberta tourism dollars.

What the government hasn’t equated, is that if these homes are either sold or locked up and left “empty” as their hallucination says they are, not only is $600 million of out-of-province investment removed from the BC economy each year, so are jobs. The $600 million is money that the BC NDP government can not generate from their population, this is money GIFTED by Canadians from other provinces to the province and citizens of British Columbia. The homes go, the yearly investment goes, and jobs go.

A $600 million yearly loss to the economy equates to a job loss of 20,000 entry level full time jobs.

Yes, a 20,000 person JOB LOSS.

20,000 PEOPLE PUT OUT OF WORK BY THE BC NDP GOVERNMENT THROUGH THEIR POLICY OF IDEOLOGICAL DISLIKE OF OTHER CANADIANS………. but the job losses will greatly exceed that, because all of this bad press will also impact the BC tourism industry, wine industry, and real estate industries. The BC NDP government is CHOOSING to put their province into a recession.

The BC NDP government have chosen to attack 15,000 property owners in an attempt to put 20,000 of their own residents out of work.

In an attempt to deport 15,000 “out-of-province” investors/property owners, the government will forcibly create unemployment for 20,000 BC residents.

Now when you take into account that in 2016 the average BC household had a 2.4 person occupancy, it means that the best case scenario is that these targeted homes, if all emptied, would house 36,000 people. Yet, 20,000 of those people will now be unemployed, which brings us down to 16,000 working people. Assume the 0.4 of the household count are children, and that reduces the buying power by another 6000 people bringing the total number of people potentially employed to be able to pay for housing down to 10,000.

So we now have 10,000 who will benefit from this xenophobic “speculation tax”, but we aren’t done yet.

Back to math class.

10,000 people employed to pay for housing (divided by) 2 (as at today’s house prices it is a two income purchase) = 5,000 homes.

Just to recap. The BC NDP government targets 15,000 homes, in order to put a minimum of 20,000 BC residents out of work, in an effort to fill 5,000 more homes.

But there is more to the story.

The BCHAF proposal that the “speculation tax” was based on was focused ONLY on the Lower Mainland area. This was the area of housing concern.

The homes needed aren’t the ones in Kelowna, Nanaimo, Victoria or the Gulf Islands (islands of which some have no ferry or electricity) which is where the vast majority of the affected properties are. The properties they need are homes within spitting distance of English Bay in Vancouver.

Is anyone seeing a problem here?

The BC NDP government is consciously choosing to break the Canadian Charter of Rights, drive away investment, drive away tourism, create unemployment, create a self-created recession, and still not have housing in the geographic area where it is needed.

Problematic.

But we aren’t done……

There is one last piece to the puzzle.

People who own property are generally “numbers people”. Seriously, there isn’t a thing that isn’t spreadsheeted. They also tend to be competitive. Due to this I see a potential twist. I look into my crystal ball and I see some owners sticking it to the BC NDP government on the basis of “affordable housing”. I foresee owners of million dollar homes selling them to big off shore money, and in turn buying up the more modest affordable homes in BC to beat the tax. Cash sales. No chain. Bam. You think BC has an affordable home crisis now, well this will seal up the inventory for sure.

So there is the story.

  • A $600 million yearly loss of investment to the province of British Columbia
  • A 20,000 person job loss
  • Lost tourism revenue
  • Breaches of the Canadian Charter of Rights
  • A self-induced recession
  • No more affordable housing in the areas where it is required
  • The potential to encourage “out-of-province” owners to sell luxury properties and in turn buy “affordable” properties, thus reducing affordable housing inventory.

You have to admit, the BC NDP government are “pretty special” in coming up with such an amazing “speculation tax” policy. Personally, I don’t think this is the political legacy I would wish to be known for.

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The Blur of a Long Weekend

It feels like posting on my blogs has slipped by the wayside as of recent. It isn’t due to lack of things to share, but rather that we have been on the go constantly. Life has been non-stop.

Some people enjoy leisurely long weekends, kicking back, hanging out, chilling. We don’t do that……ever (seriously). Generally long weekends leave us needing another long weekend to recover. So I thought I would share our blur of a long weekend.

Rogers Pass, BC, Canada

Rogers Pass, BC, Canada

The coast was calling us. We had itchy feet and fancied a road trip of a leisurely drive west. We joke about our “evening drive”. It is for the most part an evening drive, we leave early afternoon, drive evening and part of the night to reach the ferry at Tsawwassen for the first boat of the day. We love the drive, all 1142 km of it, with world class scenery most of the day and an open road at night

Gold nugget at the Royal BC Museum

Gold nugget at the Royal BC Museum

The drive went so well (as did the nap on the ferry!) that we decided to make a quick detour through Victoria (BC, Canada). We’ve discovered that there is a trick to us enjoying Victoria, we have to do the city fresh off the insanity of Alberta. We have to still be in that high intensity mode to handle the busyness and congestion of the city. We have tried in the past to go to Victoria after the slower pace of being on Pender Island and it is just too much, leaving us wondering why we went to “town”. So now we go to Victoria before heading to our little Gulf Island and we thoroughly enjoy it.

The Royal BC Museum had just opened a new exhibit, Gold Rush!, and we were keen to see it. Our children were well into checking out the artifacts and anything involving mining; clearly an addiction to Minecraft fueled this interest.

Thunderbird Park

Thunderbird Park

From the museum we were off to Thunderbird Park and the amazing totems.

Munro's, Victoria, BC, Canada

Munro’s, Victoria, BC, Canada

Our parking time was ticking down, and the ferry time nearing, but we found time for a speed walk through town to Munro’s. Heaven. A real book store. Our children had never been there, but being massive readers they were in love.

blog may victoria fish and chipsFor us, every trip to Victoria must include fish and chips. We suffer chippy withdrawal often. When we lived in the U.K. we were constantly popping around to the chippy for fish and chips, pie and chips, chips and curry……..oooh, and chicken pineapple half and half (we’ll see how many readers recognize that one!). Our chippy withdrawal gets so bad that we have on occasion considered driving to White Rock (12-13 hour drive) just to eat chips (and fried clams) on the front. There is nothing better than chips eaten out of paper wrapping. Even though catching the ferry was touch and go, we hit a chippy, and feasted as we drove to the ferry.

Sunset From the Back of the Ferry

Long weekend ferry travel is busy, unpredictable, and sometimes insane. Perhaps if we didn’t ride the ferries so much in the winter we wouldn’t notice how different long weekends are. In the winter there is always space on a sailing, people are pretty chill, I grab a chai, head upstairs to the sitting lounge, and knit in relative peace (as much peace as you get when you have five children). In the summer cars are everywhere, people are everywhere, behavior is crazy, conversations are entertainingly pretentious….it is a treat. My husband and I could just sit and eavesdrop for hours. I’m not sure what it is about long weekends that makes everyone go all Fruit Loops, perhaps it is spending time with extended family, or the attempt to one-up their friends, but it makes for a people watching extravaganza.

This weekend was no different. people panicking to get on the ferry sailing, shouting at the ferry employee in the booth…frenzy. We sit in our car and watch in amazement. Worst case is that there is another ferry in four hours, and in our world that equates as a three and a half hour nap waiting for the next sailing. Naps are a luxury. We pull into our assigned lane with no hope of getting on the sailing due to leave in less than five minutes. Get settled in. Take off the cowboy boots (seriously…the red ones…..I have a collection!). Fluff the pillow (we come prepared) and plan for a nap. Well wouldn’t you know it our line starts moving. Car after car drives on to the ferry until we are at the front of the line. We’ve been there before, the car that doesn’t make it on a sailing, so we aren’t too hopeful. Just as we are settling in again the attendant says he is going to try to fit us on….and they do….at the back of the boat….sideways. I guess there is a first for everything.

blog may pender_8772 aOnce on the island we took care of the most pressing things. First was grocery shopping; yes we shop local (I’ll collect my gold star later!). Second was to sort out the garden. The vegetable beds were growing great . My new plantings from February and April were still hanging in there (it is an iffy area I’m trying to revive). The apple trees are in bloom with promises of apples. The planters still flowered. The forested part continues to get wilder and wilder. I got to work and watered and watered; hand watering with a watering can is a workout. Hours later,grass cut and plants watered, we headed for an evening walk down to the far end of Medicine Beach.

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Medicine Beach, Pender Island, BC, Canada

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Mark praying to the stair gods in hope that just for once something will be square and level.

The next day was equally busy. A trip to the hardware store was necessary to get materials to replace our deck stairs. Followed by a trip to the grocery store. Followed by a trip up to Sea Star Estate Farm and Vineyards. We were too late for the food truck (my fault, I was sending an epic text which delayed us!) but had a chance to check out the latest art exhibit. Quite a cool space to display art.

blog may pender sea starNext the plan was to work on the deck stairs some more, but we got side tracked by the sunshine as decided to put the boats in instead.

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Part of our fleet at Peter Cove South, Pender Island, BC, Canada.

Paddling over, we got back to work. Of course as dinner time approached we started to think of what we should make for supper, which morphed into “Let’s not cook, let’s get Pender Sushi.”

blog may pender_8925As Pender Sushi is quite a drive from home, we tend to do take out and eat dinner on the beach. The choice of beach for dinner was Roesland, a Parks Canada site. Food and fresh air are a great combination, and the view was passable…….

blog may pender_8920 aor possibly amazing.

Sunday saw us closing up the house, sorting out another knitting order (yep, always working!), a visit to a beach, and the night ferry out.

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Knitting at the ferry terminal at Village Bay, Mayne, BC, Canada.

And off we went across the sea, over the mountains, and back to the prairies of Alberta.

A blur of a weekend.

Last Of The Summer Sun On Pender Island

Portrait photography and all my artistic pursuits have been on hold for the last little bit as we took a quick trip to Pender Island, BC, Canada. Enroute we popped into Victoria for the day then caught the last ferry of the evening to Pender. The next day we managed to catch the last of the summer sun and spent a wonderful afternoon on Niagara beach. It is a fantastic sandy beach, tucked away down a steep hill. I had no idea how steep a hill it was until I carried our 2 year old up it, that was quite the workout. We popped down to South Pender Island before the sun set and visited the beach at Craddock Drive. I managed to capture some fabulous seaside images of summer that day, which was lucky as the next day was one of mist and fog and rain.