Candidates identify top priority for riding

We asked Cariboo North and Cariboo-Chilcotin provincial election candidates what their top priority is for the riding. - Image submitted
We asked Cariboo North and Cariboo-Chilcotin provincial election candidates what their top priority is for the riding.
— image credit: Image submitted

In the first of a series of questions asked by the Tribune, Cariboo North and Cariboo Chilcotin candidates were asked what is the number one priority for their riding.

Cariboo North

Scott Elliott (NDP)

“I’ve been knocking on doors throughout Cariboo North, and I’ve been hearing the same thing over and over. After 16 years of BC Liberal neglect, folks are ready for a change. The BC NDP has committed to freezing hydro rates, investing in our schools, and working to keep our raw logs here to create value-added jobs in the Cariboo.

This community can count on me to be the engaged and passionate advocate we need and deserve - and to take their concerns to the legislature in Victoria.”

Tony Goulet

(BC Conservatives)

Education is the top priority for Cariboo North riding. The BC Conservatives recognize families are the most important building blocks in our communities and in our society and must be supported.

We are committed to stable funding over the next four years, which means an end to years of budget estimates that often face cuts in the middle of the year.

We need stability in the education system for children. Any government needs to address the needs of children right from birth, children who do not receive proper supports in their early years are at risk of life long physical and mental health issues, poor learning outcomes, difficultly with employment, criminality and other vulnerabilities that have an enormous cost to society in the long run.

Richard Jaques

(BC Greens)

My top priority is education and our kids; their future is paramount; this Government has lost the social license to govern and has caused irreversible damage to an entire generation of B.C. kids who deserved better.

As a parent of six and a teacher, my overall feeling towards education are two fold; two of my older boys were high functioning autistic and required much care and supervision during their school years. Unfortunately, BC Liberal Education Policy(15 years) caused much harm to my boys and thousands of others.

Schools should be fully funded and continue to operate whether they have 19 or 190 students, the continuos closing of Cariboo community schools over the past 10 years is unacceptable.

Education is a right for every child.

Coralee Oakes


The top priority of our riding is ensuring that we have good paying, family supporting jobs. We need to ensure that we have a thriving small business sector, the heart and soul of our communities. We can achieve this through ensuring our small business can maintain competitive.

For example, reducing the small business tax and eliminating PST on electricity provides money back that small businesses can invest in their companies and in their employees.

We need to focus on our unique rural advantages and matching this with local skills and trades training programs that will result in jobs.

For example, our agricultural small business sector have helped build and sustain our region and having the TRU ranching program is an important way to ensure we have the next generation of successful ranchers. We have unique tourism and aboriginal small business opportunities and we can support this through investing in important infrastructure like roads and hospitals that help us retain and attract residents, tourists and investment.

When people have jobs, we grow the economy and have the necessary funds for expected services, looking after the vulnerable and taking care of our seniors who built this province.

Cariboo Chilcotin Candidates

Donna Barnett (Liberal)

Land use will be the top priority in the Cariboo Chilcotin over the next four years because the annual allowable cut due to the Pine Beetle will decline. NSTQ treaty negotiations are on going.

The NSTQ treaty will bring sustainability to the region once it is finalized and during the negotiations transparency and inclusion of all must be accommodated with fair compensation and mitigation for third parties.

The Chilcotin land use issues must be resolved.

Working together we can encourage resource industries to invest.

Together we can have a strong economy with these important issues resolved we can unite and build strong communities providing the health care, education and social services we all desire.

Rita Giesbrecht

(BC Green)

The most urgent issue that has come to me from the people of this riding is the overall question of land use planning.

The issue includes the combined effects of the declining timber business and all that implies for income stability, the considerations of reconciliation and land claim or treaty negotiations, and the concerns of a visitor economy that must compete for land use tenures with the timber companies.

Land use planning has been sorely neglected over the past 20 years with no thought given to what must now become a transition economy.

Opportunities for diversification have been ignored and consequently the economy of the region has been destabilized.

The good news is that opportunities abound, and with education, social, and economic development policies that integrate with each other and create a stable whole, the Cariboo Chilcotin can move with confidence into this century, and new opportunities.

Sally Watson


The highest priority is for voters in Cariboo Chilcotin is choosing a government that represents average citizens from our communities, not the wealthy few on Howe Street in Vancouver. As a member of John Horgan’s team I have been focusing on making life more affordable, improving services and good jobs in a sustainable environment.

I have worked tirelessly for citizens as a director on the Thompson Nicola Regional District.

As MLA for Cariboo Chilcotin I will take this same passion and commitment to make life better for working families, seniors, students and Indigenous communities across the riding.

All of the other issues in this election depend on electing a government on your side.

A government you can trust, listens and acts for you and your family.

Whether it’s freezing hydro rate increases, addressing housing affordability, delivering accessible and affordable seniors care, $10 a day child care, better highways and apprenticeship training with job placements.



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