Last week, West Kootenay EcoSociety sent letters to local MLAs, Minister Katrine Conroy (Kootenay West), Brittny Anderson (Nelson-Creston), and Roly Russell (Boundary-Similkameen) outlining our input for the Province’s 2022 budget priorities. We appreciate the responses received from the offices of Minister Conroy and MLA Anderson

Key priorities include: 

  •  Respect Indigenous rights & honour the BC government’s commitment to the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples: 
    • Fund Provincial staff to work with the Sinixt Peoples, who were falsely declared extinct, to officially recognize them as the First Nation they continue to be.
    • Completely withdraw the militarized RCMP presence and stop any related funding from Wet’suwet’en territory and respect the 1997 ruling by the Supreme Court of Canada which recognized that it is the Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs who are the rightful titleholders to the land.
  • End poverty in BC: Implement a Guaranteed Livable Income which will eliminate poverty and ensure every British Columbian can meet their basic needs.
  • End the corporate handouts: Eliminate the deep well royalty credit and other subsidies embedded in the royalty system, do not allow for these in the budget.
  • Protect BC’s last remaining old-growth forests: Ensure stable funding to assist forestry-reliant communities (both First Nations and settlers) to protect old-growth forests and develop economic alternatives to old-growth logging. Ensure funding goes to workers, not big companies.
  • Protect species at risk: Ensure funding for ministry staff to enact species at risk legislation to protect BC’s unique wildlife and the more than 1,800 current species at risk, as your party promised it would deliver this legislation in 2017. 
  • Sustainable transportation systems: Provide more funding for local governments to implement better, and more electrified public transit and active transportation infrastructure. 
  • Support a sustainable transition: Provide funding to ensure workers in old growth forest and fossil fuel industries are able to transition to new jobs in the low-carbon economy starting right now with this budget. Support workers transition directly and do not give public financing to extraction companies.
  • Support an update of the Utilities Commission: Provide funding to ensure the BCUC can be updated to support power production from clean and renewable sources supported by communities, instead of from fossil fuels. 
  • Supportive housing for vulnerable populations: Ensure that small and rural communities receive adequate funding for long term housing projects for vulnerable populations

Your voice matters and can make a difference. Click on your MLA’s name to send a letter letting them know that these are your budget priorities too. It’s more likely they will stand up for our shared priorities.

Minister Conroy
2, 1006 3rd St.
Castlegar, BC, V1N 3X6

MLA Anderson
433 Josephine Street
Nelson, BC   V1L 1W4

MLA Russell
PO Box 1592
Grand Forks, BC  V0H 1H0

If you live outside the West Kootenay region, find your local MLAs’ contact information here. 

Send your MLA your spending priorities by February 21st. Thank you for taking action to encourage your elected MLA to invest in building the foundations of equitable, healthy, and livable communities for all British Columbians.