BC Liberal Cabinet Minister Quits BC Liberal Caucus Over HST

June 11, 2010 D. Collier Leave a comment

Interesting. Blair Lekstrom, Minister of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources for the BC Liberal Government, has resigned from both the BC Liberal Caucus and Cabinet over opposition to the HST.

Even more interesting: any debate that the HST was something that has planned by the BC Liberals before the May 2009 Election can be put to rest. According to Lekstrom:

“[A]s a member of Caucus and Cabinet, I can confirm that the HST was not contemplated before the May 2009 election.”

So, what is going to happen now? Watch for the BC Liberals to start painting Lekstrom as a maverick, opponents of the BC Liberals to start saying that this is proof that the BC Liberals are collapsing, and anti-HST local Peace River South Lekstrom opponents to point out that Lekstrom did actually vote in favour of the HST.

Hopefully This CBC Merger Talk Story…

June 8, 2010 D. Collier 6 comments

Is either a massive misquote or something coming from some fantasy agenda of Warren Kinsella’s.

After all, over the past few years, the Liberals have proven themselves to be arrogant, corrupt, internally divided, and untrustworthy. Why would New Democrats want to merge with such an entity?

Sure, there is always room for a coalition agreement after an election for the purposes of better serving Canadians, making Parliament work, and enacting parts of a New Democrat agenda, but anything beyond that, such as some agreement to not run New Democrat candidates in certain ridings or a merger should be very much out of the question.

Categories: Federal, Liberals, NDP

Could Alberta Report Inspire BC Liberals To Scrap Elected School Boards?

There has been plenty of speculation lately that the BC Liberals want to make changes to the governance of education in BC, speculation based on vague platitudes from the throne speech and the report of the comptroller general in regards to the Vancouver board’s fiscal situation, which came down hard on the elected officials for not acting like an executive broad of a crown corporation.

The question is: how would the BC Liberals change education governance? One approach can come from the School Centred Leadership/Shared Business Systems document that the Ministry of Education produced in 2006, in which the government would amalgamate most infrastructure and staff to larger bodies than the current Boards of Education, while covering up this amalgamation by giving more ‘autonomy’ to schools (read: giving money to schools on a per-pupil basis, while forming school-based “School Planning Councils”).

But a recent report released by the Alberta Government, Inspiring Education, provides a different approach.

Inspiring Education suggests that Alberta School Boards transfer their governance from elected boards to Governance Teams, which would be composed of representatives from a number of local stakeholder groups: parents, educators, municipalities, cultural groups, First Nations, business, non-profits, and so on. Most of these representatives would be appointed.

The theory behind this Governance Team structure is that it would make school boards more responsive to student and local demands. Two examples the report suggests on how this would happen: 1) a board with a growing number of immigrants could appoint more immigrants to a Governance Team in order to get relevant input; 2) a board with a large student demand for vocational training in tourism could appoint a person who owns a tourism business to work on ways to provide the training.

However, I don’t think that this is what would happen in practice. I believe that appointing people to Boards of Education would result in: 1) mostly those with connections to the government being appointed; and 2) a system in which Boards of Education would only be accountable to those who appointed them, not local citizens. That is, after all, what happened when the BC Liberals scrapped elected health boards for appointed ones. Furthermore, I would suggest that Boards of Education could be made responsive to student and local demands using committees rather than replacing the entire elected board with a Governance Team.

But if the BC Liberals did actually want to get rid of elected Boards of Education and replace them with appointees, the Albertan Inspiring Education report could certainly be an inspiration for both a structure and spin in which to do so.

Conservative Founding Principle Bullet Point #12

The Conservative Party of Canada has “[a] belief that a responsible government must be fiscally prudent and should be limited to those responsibilities which cannot be discharged reasonably by the individual or others.

Then why the heck is a Conservative government wasting taxpayer dollars on a fake lake that is walking distance from one of the biggest lakes in the world?

Well, one could say that no individual or corporation would build such a fake lake, so the government has to, but I’d suspect that’s stretching the original intent of the principle.

Categories: Conservatives, Federal

Types Of Apartment For Rent In Edmonton

Edmonton is one of the cities in Canada with a buzz of activities. It is for this reason that visitors come in yearly to be part of the busy life. With such a population, finding a decent and the most affordable accommodation has become a challenge. So if you are in search of accommodation, it is important that you get to know the different property choices you should expect in Edmonton. Here are the types of apartments for rent in the area.


Penthouse Apartments

This has recently become a common type of apartment in Edmonton. A penthouse will in most cases occupy two floors in a building. Most of them have a living room, study, bedroom, bathroom and kitchen. These apartments can have either one, two or three bedrooms on average. However, it all depends on what you find suitable.


Walk-up or low-rise Apartment

These types are normally located in buildings that don’t have elevators. They are older buildings in most cases less than five stories high. One shortcoming is that they may not have as many amenities as you would find in other options. They are however the best option for big families that want to live within a tight budget.


Spacious Apartments

Spacious apartments will have 2-3 bedrooms, a kitchen and a living room. But maintaining such can be pretty expensive. When looking for such, it is advisable to go for the ones that are already furnished. This will save you time and cash. It is also important to understand that spacious apartments cost higher than other types of accommodations. They have amenities like a swimming pool and a gym.


Loft

With only few walls in the interior, a loft is big and offers you an open space than other apartments. Most of them are just commercial buildings converted into residential spaces. They have exposed plumbing pipes, high ceilings and large windows. They are easily customized but getting one of them isn’t as easy as getting the ones mentioned above.


With that in mind, it shouldn’t be a daunting task when it comes to looking for an apartment in the great city of Edmonton. In fact, with the above information, you can select the best apartment that suits your needs. You also need to understand that each type comes with its own price and the amenities included can influence the cost. So, make sure you have a discussion with the agencies in charge to determine if the type of the apartment is worth its price.