B.C. budget to give new premier $2.55 billion in flexibility

Jonathan Fowlie, Vancouver Sun

… Reaction to Tuesday’s budget was mixed.

“A status quo budget for health care means that families are going to pay higher premiums in their MSP, it means healthcare workers are going to be stretched to the limit and frankly it means that seniors are going to be paying more of their own care in the last years of their lives,” said Judy Darcy, secretary-business manager of the Hospital Employees’ Union. In Tuesday’s budget, the government again confirmed MSP rates will rise by about six per cent on January 1, 2012.

“It’s absolutely not good enough. Now is not the time for a status quo budget,” said Paul Faoro, general vice president of for the B.C. arm of the Canadian Union of Public Employees.

“British Columbia’s families are hurting,” he added.

John Winter of the BC Chamber of Commerce said he thinks Tuesday’s budget was “very prudent” and “very responsible”….

Greg D’Avignon, president of the Business Council of British Columbia offered a similar analysis.

“It’s a very conservative budget. It gives the next leader a lot of flexibility,” he said….