Today's throne speech, opening the first session of the 40th Parliament, focuses on growing British Columbia's economy, controlling spending, and leaving a legacy for generations to come.
"British Columbians are defined by our shared values," said Premier Christy Clark. "Giving our children greater opportunities, caring for those who cared for us, and leaving our province as magnificent as we found it. Every decision our government makes is guided by these values."
The throne speech also outlined the government's plans to seize the economic opportunity presented by natural gas, and use the revenues to chart a course to a debt-free B.C. The government is creating a new Ministry of Natural Gas Development to bring the opportunity home.
"This is an historic opportunity for our province, and our generation," said Premier Clark. "We can be ones that put B.C. on the course towards a debt-free future, creating more and better opportunities for our children. It's an opportunity to do for them what our parents did for us."
The speech from the throne also outlines the following important initiatives that will be announced in the weeks to come to help secure the future for British Columbia families:
- Freezing personal-tax rates and the carbon tax for five years.
- Accelerate the B.C. Jobs Plan to drive growth across B.C.'s most competitive export sectors.
- Controlling spending to achieve Balanced Budget 2013.
- Continue ongoing efforts to secure non-treaty economic benefit agreements and long-term treaties and partnerships with First Nations.
- A core review of all government ministries to ensure they are structured for success to achieve economic development and job creation.
- Creating a new Ministry of Technology, Innovation and Citizens' Services to ensure government does all it can to foster innovation and B.C.'s growing technology sector.
- To ensure that British Columbians are first in line for jobs, preparing the workforce with skills that match current and future job opportunities.
- Drive growth in the clean-energy sector.
Office of the Premier