BC Liberals' Fall Session Cancellation Target Of Integrity BC Petition

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Premier Christy Clark announces a cabinet renewal of 16 ministers and two ministers of state on Sept. 5, 2012. The B.C. Liberals subsequently cancelled a fall session of the legislature. (Chad Hipolito, CP) | CP

Integrity BC has launched a petition calling on the governing B.C. Liberals to reconsider calling the fall sitting of the legislature.

"It may very well be that B.C.'s MLAs are the only elected officials in Canada who will not reconvene in 2012," said the public advocacy group in a news release on Monday.

House leader Mike de Jong told reporters last week the government was cancelling the fall session and would use the time instead to meet with constituents and introduce voters to new cabinet ministers.

IntegrityBC said there is "no excuse" not to hold a fall sitting when the province is facing issues such as the Northern Gateway pipeline and major cuts to the budget. It pointed out that legislative members in Ontario have already reconvened, to be joined soon by members in Alberta, Saskatchewan and the Maritimes.

The petition is available on IntegrityBC's Facebook page or on activist site Avaaz.org.

IntegrityBC isn't the first to take the B.C. Liberals to task for cancelling a fall sitting of the legislature. CBC host Evan Solomon penned a scathing open letter to B.C. Premier Christy Clark, pointing that it will have been nine months by the time the government sits in the legislature next.

"Is it really too much for citizens to want their leaders to focus on key issues and reaching out — whatever that means — while being held accountable in their own legistalure?" he asked.

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