Canadian Taxpayers Federation

Who's Running TransLink Anyway?

Jordan Bateman | Posted 10.15.2013 | Canada British Columbia
Jordan Bateman

At TransLink, the inmates are now running the asylum. With such little support from taxpayers, riders, mayors, the minister and the board chair, TransLink's push for a $23 billion tax-and-spend binge is coming from its senior executive team. They are making media appearances and desperately trying to push for higher taxes. It will be up to the taxpayers to take the keys away from the transportation authority's senior executives

City Hall Pay Is Out Of Control

Jordan Bateman | Posted 10.05.2013 | Canada British Columbia
Jordan Bateman

Taxpayers and watchdogs often focus their attention on the top of the government salary spectrum. Government executives are increasingly overpaid, especially at the municipal and regional district level. But it's not just the top end that is out of control. Taxpayers are overpaying for labour throughout the system.

Enough With the Reviews: B.C. Needs a Complete Reset

Jordan Bateman | Posted 09.20.2013 | Canada British Columbia
Jordan Bateman

B.C. has seen umpteen reviews of various government agencies and files. BC Hydro, ICBC, BC Ferries and TransLink have all been reviewed within the past two years. Reviews have been promised for the B.C. Lottery Corporation, B.C. Housing, the B.C. Oil and Gas Commission, B.C. Transit, and the Liquor Distribution Board. Pre-election, the NDP generated a list of 35 reviews had been promised by the government. One hesitates to remind government of these promised reviews, lest a review into the missing reviews also be promised.

Tax Credits are a Bad Business

Jordan Bateman | Posted 08.25.2013 | Canada British Columbia
Jordan Bateman

It's bad enough that many municipalities are hiking property taxes this year, but the provincial government's decision to kill a light industry tax credit is piling on B.C.'s job creators -- and highlighting why such tax credits are bad policy in the first place.

B.C.'s Big Byelection Bill Makes No Sense

Jordan Bateman | Posted 08.18.2013 | Canada British Columbia
Jordan Bateman

Think of it as an electoral echo. While many British Columbians are just getting over the election hangover from May's blockbuster BC Liberal comeback win, 13 municipalities are about to head into by-election mode. Four mayors and 10 councillors from 13 different communities were elected May 14th. A dozen BC Liberals, two New Democrats: all will need to be replaced in the coming weeks, triggering a series of expensive by-elections.

How B.C. Pays So Quebec Can Play

Jordan Bateman | Posted 08.05.2013 | Canada British Columbia
Jordan Bateman

in Canada's Equalization program, "have" provinces such as British Columbia, Alberta and Saskatchewan send billions of dollars to Ottawa that are in turn handed to chronic overspending "have-nots" like Quebec. It creates a system where the reward for prudent fiscal management is bailing out those who couldn't care less. In other words, we in B.C. pay so they can play.

Adrian Dix: The Unpredictable Premier?

Jordan Bateman | Posted 06.30.2013 | Canada British Columbia
Jordan Bateman

Voters want to know where their potential leaders stand before they have to walk into a polling station and put a tick next to a party's name. While it's impossible for anyone to fully anticipate and articulate every possible challenge and scenario ahead of a four-year term in office, taxpayers want a predictable pattern set out. Political leaders should be able to change their mind as circumstances change, but nothing had changed about asset sales or Kinder Morgan.

You're Being Taxed on Your Tax-Free Savings Account

Tim Paziuk | Posted 06.25.2013 | Canada Business
Tim Paziuk

I wish we could call a "time out" for politicians. Wouldn't it be great if we could send them to some dark room in Parliament and make them think about what they're doing? I'm talking about the tax you pay on your RRSP and all other types of investment accounts. Tax on TFSAs, RESPs and RDSPs. Yes, you're reading this correctly.

B.C. School Officials Getting Raises Without Reviews

Jordan Bateman | Posted 06.05.2013 | Canada British Columbia
Jordan Bateman

School trustees and superintendents may bristle at the suggestion that top education staffers don't deserve pay increases. But how can they defend that position when they fail to evaluate their top employees every year?

Stop PavCo's Banana Republic Tactics On BC Place Info Requests

Jordan Bateman | Posted 05.13.2013 | Canada British Columbia
Jordan Bateman

Why shouldn't taxpayers know what the B.C. Lions or Vancouver Whitecaps pay to play in our $563 million stadium? Why shouldn't we be aware of the legal issues surrounding the stadium's roof? Or why the Telus naming deal died?

Did B.C. Transit Police Sweeten Their Stats?

Jordan Bateman | Posted 05.07.2013 | Canada British Columbia
Jordan Bateman

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.

Oda Gets Lifetime Achievement Award For Government Waste

The Huffington Post Canada | Posted 03.06.2013 | Canada Politics

Oh Bev Oda, you may never live that $16 orange juice down. The former MP and international co-operation minister won a Lifetime Achievement "Teddy"...

How Alberta's High Earners Are Qualifying For Subsidized Housing

CP | Bill Graveland, The Canadian Press | Posted 04.30.2013 | Canada Alberta

CALGARY - The Canadian Taxpayers Federation says it has discovered a person making $112,000 a year living in subsidized housing in northern Alberta.Th...

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

Jordan Bateman | Posted 04.28.2013 | Canada British Columbia
Jordan Bateman

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.

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

Jordan Bateman | Posted 04.17.2013 | Canada British Columbia
Jordan Bateman

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."

Metro Vancouver, TransLink Make Case Against Regional Policing

Jordan Bateman | Posted 04.08.2013 | Canada British Columbia
Jordan Bateman

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.

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

Jordan Bateman | Posted 04.01.2013 | Canada British Columbia
Jordan Bateman

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.

Transit Police Lost Explosives WHERE?

The Huffington Post B.C. | Jesse Ferreras | Posted 01.21.2013 | Canada British Columbia

Transit Police in Metro Vancouver confirm that an officer left an explosive device on an Air Canada plane in 2011 during a training exercise and that ...

Time To Treat Aboriginals Like Everyone Else?

CP | Heather Scoffield, The Canadian Press | Posted 03.17.2013 | Canada Politics

OTTAWA - An influential lobby group with close ties to the federal Conservatives is recommending that Ottawa ditch the Indian Act and give First Natio...

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

Jordan Bateman | Posted 03.12.2013 | Canada British Columbia
Jordan Bateman

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.

B.C. Health Premiums Go Up

CBC | Posted 02.26.2013 | Canada British Columbia

For the fourth year in a row, the B.C. government is hiking Medical Services Premiums in January, but that's not the only way taxpayers will be handin...

Another Bitter Year Brewing For B.C. Taxpayers

Jordan Bateman | Posted 02.26.2013 | Canada British Columbia
Jordan Bateman

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.

Are These Alberta Politicians On The Naughty Or Nice List?

The Canadian Press | Posted 02.20.2013 | Canada Alberta

EDMONTON - The Alberta chapter of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation has released its annual naughty-or-nice list of provincial cabinet ministers. S...

What Ottawa Isn't Saying About Canada's Deficit

Gregory Thomas | Posted 02.16.2013 | Canada Business
Gregory Thomas

Why has Canada's federal debt jumped over 30 per cent since 2008, to over $600 billion? Why did the government miss its deficit target by $1.4 billion last year, and what is pushing this year's deficit forecast higher by more than $5 billion to $26 billion? Figures released by the PBO show that, contrary to all the talk we've been hearing about cutbacks, Ottawa's payroll is getting out of control.

B.C. Taxpayers Feel Pain of Politicians Going Green

Jordan Bateman | Posted 02.16.2013 | Canada British Columbia
Jordan Bateman

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.