Stumpage fees skyrocket under NDP

Job losses the result for forestry workers

Stumpage is a fee that businesses or individuals pay when they harvest timber from crown lands in B.C. Stumpage fees for raw saw logs are adjusted yearly beginning on March 1 of every year.

The stumpage fees are applied at different rates in relation to tree species. These species are balsam, hemlock, cedar, cypress, Douglas Fir, spruce, and other.

The province is divided into different regions and these regions are: Campbell River, Chilliwack, North Island-Central Coast, Sea to Sky, South Island, Coast Mountain and Haida Gwaii. As an example, I am using South Island.

In 2016, under a B.C. Liberal government the average combined stumpage fee rate for these species was $48.16 per cubic metre. In 2017, the combined average rate was $38.73 per cubic metre. Your B.C. Liberal government reduced the rates by 19.5 per cent from 2016 to 2017.

A provincial election was held in May 2017, and along comes an NDP minority government which adjusts the stumpage rates for 2018. The NDP raised the average stumpage rates to $103.28 per cubic metre, an increase of 166.6 per cent.

In 2019, the NDP minority government raised the average stumpage rates to $223.10 per cubic metre, an increase of 116 per cent. The B.C. Liberal government had the average stumpage rate at $48.16 per cubic metre in 2016, and now in 2019, the B.C. NDP minority government has raised the rate to $223.10, an increase of 215.8 per cent, from 2016.

This is the time when forestry workers across the province should be at work. Instead, they are facing job losses and no paycheques.

In summary, the NDP stumpage fees are out of sight. Can we expect any change? No, not until the NDP understands the difference between a debit and a credit entry in a set of accounting records.

They have absolutely no knowledge when it comes to financing and do not know there are two sides to a ledger which both sides have to balance with one another. Some B.C. taxpayers voted for change in the last provincial election. The change they voted for was “disaster”.

Joe Sawchuk,

Duncan

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