‘Fake’ Site C review is a waste of money: Peace River MLA

Site C construction, July 8, 2017 | Photo: Matt Preprost, Alaska Highway News

BC Liberal MLA Dan Davies, who represents Peace River North, said he’s seven kilometres away from the Site C project in Fort St. John and has worked on it himself. He said it’s on time and on budget.

The comments came in response to the announcement the BC Utilities Commission will begin a review of the $8.8 billion dam project August 9.

Six to 12 weeks isn’t long enough to complete a review of value, he said. And the project has already been reviewed multiple times, he said, which should be enough.

“It’s unfathomable that we’re doing this epic waste of taxpayer money for a fake review,” Davies said.

Reviewing the project was an NDP campaign promise and one of the conditions of the agreement it reached with the Green Party in order to form government and oust the BC Liberals from power following May's election.

The NDP consulted the Green Party when developing the terms of reference for the review—but the decision on what happens next rests with the NDP cabinet.

Green Party Leader Andrew Weaver said he was consulted on the draft terms of reference and said the process looks good. He said he would be surprised if it finds Site C is a more economical option than investing in alternatives such as the energy storage sector.

“I think it would be fiscally foolish to proceed and I think they would have trouble with their own caucus if they proceed,” he said, given that some members have spoken against the project.

Weaver predicted the NDP would shelve the project, rather than kill it or continue.

“I suspect the option about delaying and stalling is going to be the kind of kick-the-can decision that will be made,” he said. “I don’t think that’s the right decision. But I wouldn’t be surprised to see that as the decision, because it’s a way of trying have your cake and eat it too, which we’ve seen a lot of in B.C. politics.”

—with files from Times Colonist

Alaska Highway News