David Eby talks priorities following first few weeks of big spending

David Eby talks priorities following first few weeks of big spending
David Eby, B.C.'s new premier, joined Rob Shaw for an episode of Political Capital.

Though it hasn’t even been a month since David Eby was sworn in as the new premier of B.C., he has hit the ground running with some big announcements.

Eby was sworn in on Nov. 18, and since then he has announced a $100 electricity credit, announced a public safety plan and housing plan, promised funding for RCMP, announced measures to license more internationally trained doctors, and re-announced plans for a new medical school at Simon Fraser University.

While many of the plans have been criticized, Eby tells CHEK News’ political correspondent Rob Shaw that these announcements come after he heard from people around the province that these are issues they wanted to see urgent action on.

“On those key issues, they want to see fast action from us, they want to see more. And that’s been the theme of those announcements,” Eby said in an interview with Shaw on Dec. 1. “My goal is that British Columbians will see from our government results that touched their lives that they can see, that they can feel, that are very real for them.”

These announcements were all part of the 100-day plan that Eby outlined in October before he was sworn in as premier.

Since Eby is taking over from John Horgan, some have been speculating whether he intends to call an early election, but Eby said he will stick to the fixed election date of October 2024.

“I think the mistake would be to think about the job that I have, the job my colleagues have, as being one of political strategy, that’s not the job that we have,” Eby said. “The job that we have is to deliver for British Columbians on their key priorities. That’s what they’ve sent us to Victoria to do, and that’s what we’re going to do.”

Over the next two years, Eby says he plans to make progress on some of the key areas that people in B.C. have said are their concerns, but stresses the issues will not be completely solved in that time.

“I don’t think British Columbians think that we’re going to solve every issue over the next two years leading up to the next election, but they want to know where we’re going, and they want to see progress in that direction,” Eby said. “I want to see that too. That’s a big priority for me and for our whole government.”

On Vancouver Island, Eby says communities across the Island are seeing growth and he plans to look at ways the provincial government can support communities as they grow.

“There are challenges that come with the growth, though,  and making sure it’s sustainable for Vancouver Island,” Eby said. “Challenges around transportation, around health care and schools. So making sure we’re supporting fast growing communities on the Island with the supports that people need, and the amenities that they expect in their communities is going to be really important.”

You can listen to the full interview, as well as a panel discussion on Eby’s recent announcements, on the Political Capital with Rob Shaw podcast, or watch the full interview below or on CHEK News on Dec. 4 at 6 p.m.


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