Stumpage fee hikes part of NDP ‘disaster’
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 up 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 metres. 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 raises the average stumpage rates to $103.28 per cubic measure, a increase of 166.6 per cent. In 2019 the NDP minority government raises the average stumpage rates to $223.10 per cubic measure, a 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 understand 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 that 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”. Unbelievable!