B.C. Finance Minister Selina Robinson fired back at MLA for Abbotsford South, Bruce Banman, after he was critical of the 2021 provincial budget.
The Liberal MLA, elected in October of last year, said it was not the budget that BC was hoping for – criticizing the lack of planning for affordable housing, infrastructure including the widening if Highway 1, and a lack of support for small businesses.
Robinson felt that much of what Banman claimed was inaccurate.
“He clearly doesn’t understand how a budget works,” she said, noting the Surrey hospital, which the MLA was concerned may not be getting the funding it needed for completion, will see patients by 2027.
“The Province is providing $8 million to the Catalyst Community Developments Society for a new 82-unit development for low to moderate income families and seniors at 20097 72nd Avenue,” Robinson added.
“BC Housing is providing capital funding of $3 million for the development of a 15-bed hospice residence, operated by the Langley Hospice Society,” she explained. “Fraser Health is also contributing to project funding.
Robinson also noted that both the B.C. and federal governments provided capital funding of $455,000 for a five‑bedroom home that will offer a safe space for vulnerable youth seeking counselling and medical services, operated by Encompass Support Services Society.
A particular source of contention was the widening of Highway 1, which Banman said needs to go further than 264th Street in Aldergrove and at a quicker pace.
Robinson’s response was that there will be accommodate new high-occupancy vehicle lanes, new underpasses, and a parking lot for up to 150 commercial trucks and 45 passenger vehicles because of the 2021 budget.
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