Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Economic Statement: Burnaby's minivans

Minister of Finance Jim Flaherty made reference to Burnaby in his Economic Statement today.

Flaherty stated, "A family spending $30,000 on a new minivan in Burnaby will save $600 in GST" after both phases of the tax cut. For the benefit of hockey moms and dads everywhere else in Canada, that $30,000 minivan will also be be $600 less.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Pothole Politics

Somedays it seems like all the City of Burnaby does is road work: speed bumps, roundabouts, sidewalks, new street lights and stop signs, and those road narrowing triangles that calm traffic.

This post is to allow us all to rant about what specific section of Burnaby road drives us nuts. Enjoy.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Tipping the Gateway poll

A message originating from concernedburnabyresident@hotmail.com was forwarded to Burnaby Politics late Thursday evening, a few hours after the initial e-mail. The message, intended to push the poll towards the pro-Gateway side, reads:

If you support the Provincial government's twinning of the Port Mann Bridge & widening of the freeway and you are opposed to the Bby NDP Mayor refusing to cooperate with the Province on the Gateway transportation project… …then, PLEASE vote "no" in this poll:
Vote here if you wish… http://www.burnabynewsleader.com/

Not that much of note, but remember online polls serve little purpose as this happens to nearly all of them if someone actually cares enough to jolt the poll in one direction or another.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Rotting on the vine

Public Eye Online broke a story about David Orchard running in south Burnaby earlier this week. On the awful idea list, this may be up there with blaming the other leadership camps for losing the recent Quebec by-elections.

Although Orchard, who has one of the best political machines in Canada, is a key reason why Stephane Dion overtook Gerard Kennedy on the first ballot (and then hung in there to win the crown of thorns that has become the Liberal leadership), he should not be given special treatment in terms of becoming a candidate. Furthermore, if he gets special treatment, Burnaby-New Westminster should not be considered special treatment for any Liberal.

Orchard running in Burnaby-New Westminster has many downsides. No part of the riding has gone Liberal since 2000 when Herb Dhaliwal won in Vancouver South-Burnaby. MP Peter Julian is one of the few bright spots in the NDP Caucus and has a large and loyal group of supporters from the social democratic, environmental, and unionist left. Finally, Orchard pushing out Lily Harvey, a visible minority woman who is a community volunteer and a highly education professional, is as bad of a move as acclaiming Billy Cunningham in Burnaby-Douglas in 2004.

Despite having family and old PC leadership pockets of support in the province, David Orchard is not the answer for the Liberals in British Columbia.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Planting the Flag

The biannual fundraiser for Burnaby BC Liberals was last night. It featured Harry Bloy's BC flag, a diverse multicultural crowd that was representative of Burnaby, and government supporters as far as the eye could see. Burnaby's political right put on the show for sixth year Premier Gordon "Gord" Campbell.

TEAM Burnaby councillors, other BC Liberal MLAs, and Coquitlam First councillor and former MLA Richard Stewart were on hand for the Liberal love-in that was a lot more friendly than Jamie Graham's roast/Vancouver Police fundraiser earlier in the week.

The strong showing by Bloy, John Nuraney and Richard Lee suggests all is well for the governing party in Burnaby's three Liberal held ridings. Things may still be difficult in traditional NDP territory of Burnaby-Edmonds unless Raj Chouhan comes out on the wrong end of the simmering NDP feud. For now, only time will tell.

Friday, October 05, 2007

James still toast; Campbell comes for dinner

Next week Premier, and more importantly BC Liberal leader, Gordon Campbell makes his way to Burnaby for a party fundraiser. On October 10, the Liberal MLAs for Burnaby - Harry Bloy, Richard Lee, and John Nuraney - plus their orphaned riding of Burnaby-Edmonds will be in fighting form to bring in the cash needed to keep their seats and add another.

As for the other seat, Edmonds, Wednesday night will be the chance for some of the early and eager hopefuls to make themselves known. The crowd at the rubber chicken event will be the people that successful candidate needs to tie into to help finance their battle against NDP MLA Raj Chouhan, who has been getting a slightly bigger profile in recent weeks.

Despite all that inside politics, the real issue will be Campbell's address to the crowd. Expect Gateway, the government's star program, to feature prominently. Burnaby is the main battleground of Gateway as the majority of council wants further debate while the province wants to pave. Thankfully, the Premier has a friendly group to take the NDP and their allies to task over opposition to more lanes and bridges. Campbell should be happy he not only has his government's record to champion but also another group's support in his fight with the anti-Gatewayers. Additionally, Carole James's position on the issue has done a good job destroying the credibility of many other anti-Gateway groups.

With a situation like that, Campbell's Wednesday dinner guests should be in for a feast, or at least the Premier feasting on the directionless NDP.

Monday, October 01, 2007

As dangerous as Dosanjh (and Harris)

According to Public Eye Online, there is one MP from each of the three parties in BC that do not yet have an opponent. The Liberal is Vancouver South MP Ujjal Dosanjh. The Conservative is Cariboo-Prince George MP Dick Harris. For the NDP, it is Peter Julian, the Burnaby-New Westminster MP.

Harris and Dosanjh are solid frontrunners who are in a better position than most of their respective parties colleagues. Has Peter Julian become the NDP's cornerstone in BC? Solid NDP MPs Nathan Cullen, Libby Davies, and even Burnaby-Douglas's Bill Siksay have at least one opponent lined up already.

The Conservatives appear to have candidates who are ready to run, while the Liberals have gone through candidates like nobody's business. At the moment, it appears that Lily Harvey is the only nomination candidate. No dates are set for either party or for the Green Party.