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Jordan Bateman

British Columbia Director, Canadian Taxpayers Federation

Jordan Bateman is the British Columbia Director of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation, after working as a journalist, small business owner, and Township of Langley councillor. Having ghostwritten and edited more than 125 books for other people, he is now working on his own.
CP

Did B.C. Transit Police Sweeten Their Stats?

What if a public company gave one set of sales numbers to its board of directors, another to its shareholders, and a third to its auditors? Would you feel comfortable entrusting the executive of this company with a $29.6 million investment? Incredibly, that's precisely what has happened with the Transit Police.
03/07/2013 11:52 EST
Alamy

Fat Tax Didn't Work in Denmark, Won't Work in B.C.

The idea of a fat or sugar tax in British Columbia continues to pop up like the pesky mole in that old midway game. Unfortunately, it's taxpayers -- and the provincial economy -- that would get whacked by such a tax. Supporters of such a flawed taxation policy should look to Denmark's experience for a textbook example of why it doesn't work.
02/26/2013 01:44 EST
B.C. Gov

Christy Clark, The New Boss, Turned Out To Be A Lot Like The Old Boss

When Christy Clark took over as premier of British Columbia two years ago, she had a window of opportunity to change taxpayers' perceptions of her government. To improve her chances in the 2013 election, Clark needed to throw out unpopular and unworkable ideas brought in by her predecessor Gordon Campbell. In a symbolic way, she needed to string a huge banner over the B.C. Legislature that said, "Under New Management."
02/15/2013 04:56 EST
Alamy

Metro Vancouver, TransLink Make Case Against Regional Policing

While TransLink's habitual tax increases, never-ending budget deficits and lack of direct accountability have been well documented over the past several years, Metro Vancouver has slid somewhat under the radar. This lack of accountability to taxpayers has been a problem at Metro Vancouver for a long time, fostered by staffers playing political games and local politicians distracted by their elected duties at their various city halls.
02/06/2013 06:39 EST
Alamy

Breaking Up With The HST: It's Definitely You, Not Us

No matter what, on April 1, the HST finally moves on, and we can get on with our lives. Sure, she'll be mentioned from time to time and we'll no doubt stumble across her once in a while on Facebook or Twitter, but we're finally breaking up, and we are never, ever, ever getting back together.
01/30/2013 02:47 EST
Handout

B.C. Independent Officers Should Never Be Re-Appointed

B.C. taxpayers should be grateful to John Doyle for his persistent, hard-nosed work over the past six years. And perhaps six years is too short of a term, but renewal should not be an option. Now it's time for another watchdog to come in and give issues fresh eyes and a fresh voice, just as Doyle built on the work of previous auditors general.
01/10/2013 02:56 EST
Getty Images

Another Bitter Year Brewing For B.C. Taxpayers

Once the champagne is drunk, the noisemakers go silent, the balloons pop and the New Year's kisses end, 2013 will bring one nasty hangover for cash-strapped B.C. taxpayers. Taxes, fees and levies from all levels of government are set to go up, leaving even less of your hard-earned money in your pocket.
12/27/2012 10:53 EST
CP

B.C. Taxpayers Feel Pain of Politicians Going Green

Regional politicians seem more concerned than ever with looking green — all while sucking more green out of taxpayers' pockets. Whether it is the $783 million sewage treatment plant in Greater Victoria, the $450 million waste incinerator in Metro Vancouver or the $3 billion subway line to Vancouver's University of British Columbia campus, these projects are nowhere near as environmentally green as politicians claim them to be.
12/17/2012 06:04 EST
CP

B.C. Government Fast Losing Trust Of Taxpayers

Trust must be the cornerstone of the relationship between a government and its taxpayers. Every year, we hand over our hard-earned money — a bank account worth $42 billion — to our politicians. We expect them to run our affairs professionally and efficiently and to keep us well-informed on their plans. When that trust erodes, it's very difficult for government to earn it back. But it can be done, if Clark and de Jong are willing to change their behaviour.
12/06/2012 06:37 EST
Alamy

Adding PST To School Supplies Part Of $159-Million Tax Grab

When British Columbians rejected the HST in the 2011 referendum, they were promised things would go back to the PST normal. But an independent panel has recommended adding taxes to things that virtually every B.C. family buys -- a plan that will increase our already sky-high cost of living.
11/22/2012 05:15 EST
AFP

Vancouver Bixi Bike Share Takes Taxpayers For Ride

Vancouver's Bixi public bike-share program may sound like good public policy but in the end, it will be taxpayers who will get taken for a ride. Why are they paying for bikes when the car shares have proven transportation co-ops and businesses can be sustained without taxpayer dollars?
11/07/2012 08:05 EST
CP

Government Ads Use And Abuse Taxpayers' Money

Once upon a time, a popular opposition firebrand named Christy Clark stood up in the B.C. Legislature to rip the NDP government for spending tax dollars on shameless, self-promoting advertising. Fast forward 13 years and there was Clark, now B.C. Liberal premier, last week holding court for 90 seconds of taxpayer-funded TV ad time to laud her B.C. Jobs Plan -- even promising that four more weekly installments are on the way.
11/05/2012 02:09 EST
Alamy

B.C. MLAs Break Word On Expenses, Disrepect Taxpayers

Last week, the Legislative Assembly Management Committee, chaired by Barisoff and made up of both Liberal and NDP MLAs, agreed to post quarterly expense reports online -- but continue to withhold actual receipts, ensuring the public is kept in the dark on where public money is actually going. For two parties who are at each other's throats on nearly every issue facing this province, it is astounding that the Liberals and NDP continue to walk in lockstep when it comes to hiding these receipts.
10/23/2012 04:27 EDT
PA

Carbon Tax Fight Pits Rural B.C. vs. Vancouver

It's easy for Lower Mainlanders, blessed with multiple transit lines and mild weather, to suggest ratcheting up the carbon tax. But the tax is receiving a rough ride elsewhere. It seems the further you get away from Vancouver, the more hated the carbon tax becomes.
10/10/2012 06:38 EDT

B.C. Voting Reform Debate One Landslide Away

It's impossible to keep a good idea down for long -- and a looming NDP landslide may put electoral reform back on British Columbia's political radar. Many casual observers would say such disconnect between the number of votes and seats is unfair. But this is becoming a recurring phenomenon in B.C. The way British Columbians elect MLAs was a hot topic of debate after the 2001 B.C. Liberal landslide, which saw a 58 per cent vote count turn into 97 per cent of the seats in the legislature.
09/26/2012 03:39 EDT

B.C. Independent School Growth Should Be Studied, Not Attacked

If the business across the street from yours, with fewer resources and higher prices, had increased its share of customers every year for 35 years, wouldn't you be curious why? Wouldn't that interest intensify if your own customer base had shrunk in 24 of those 35 years? This is the situation B.C.'s schools find themselves in.
09/10/2012 08:15 EDT

'Truth' From Gordon Campbell's Ex-Aide Comes Too Late

They say dead men tell no lies. That may never be truer than in the cutthroat blood-sport of B.C. politics. Consider Martyn Brown, the former chief of staff for Gordon Campbell and chief architect of the B.C. Liberals' decade in power. He's no longer in politics and suddenly feels very free to tell the truth about the B.C. government.
08/23/2012 01:35 EDT

ICBC Executives Make Drunken Sailors Blush

Former B.C. Premier W.A.C. Bennett once had a cabinet minister tell him he would treat taxpayers' money as if it were his own. "Oh, no, you won't," Bennett said, "not as long as I'm premier. That money is tax money, it's trust money, and I want 110 cents worth of value out of every dollar." That's a philosophy the overpaid executives at the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC) have clearly failed to embrace. That shouldn't be a surprise -- government monopolies are notoriously inefficient and expensive.
08/19/2012 06:29 EDT