Kelowna MLA under fire for log export decision

Steve Thomson, who is also B.C. forest minister, overruled a government advisory committee to allow raw logs to be exported.

Kelowna-Mission MLA Steve Thomson, who is also B.C.’s forests minister, is under fire for a recent decision he made about the export of raw logs out of the province to an overseas mill.

The NDP Opposition is blasting Thomson for overruling a government advisory committee that said the logs did not meet the basic requirement for export and should have been sold to an independent manufacturer in Surrey.

“The minister’s decision means that logs that would have otherwise created jobs in B.C. were instead exported,” said NDP leader Adrian Dix. “The minister needs to explain why he made that unprecedented decision.”

Thomson did explain Tuesday, in Victoria, saying the logs were approved for export because of the costs associated with shipping them from Vancouver Island to the Lower Mainland. He said that calculation was not factored into the advisory committee’s recommendation.

But the explanation was not good enough for the NDP.

Its forests critic, Norm McDonald, accused Thomson of making the advisory committee “irrelevant”  and declaring “open season” on raw log exports out of B.C. despite a long-standing rule inthe province that says raw logs should only be exported if they are surplus to provincial needs.

Recent statistics show B.C. exported a record 5.5 million cubic metres of raw logs last year , more than double the amount exported in 2010.

The NDP has blasted the Liberal government for the level of raw log exports, saying it is costing the province jobs.

Meanwhile, Thomson told reporters in Victoria that log exports policies in B.C. are currently under review.



Just Posted

Accused in Kelowna triple murder in court today

Jacob Forman has been in custody since he was arrested and charged with second degree murder

Big White hits record number of visitors

The resort welcomed 495 more Australian guests this year during the holiday period than last

Well-known map maker recreates Kelowna

Montreal artist Jean-Louis Rheault is creating a new version of Kelowna’s Geopictorial map

JoeAnna’s House fundraising campaign reaches $4.5 million

Offering ‘home away from home’ for families of KGH patients

2014 murder case finally goes to trial

Steven Randy Pirko was charged with second-degree murder in 2016

B.C. cougar kitten rescued after mother struck by vehicle

Conservation Officers find home for young kitten found dehydrated and frostbitten near Williams Lake

Dube, Foote pace Rockets to O.T. win

World junior gold medalists key in 4-3 victory Wednesday over Lethbridge

Winter storm coming to B.C. this weekend

The bets are on as to how much snow the province will actually get in the coming days

Public asked to report bat sightings

White nose syndrome leads to bats flying in winter or death.

B.C. civil rights group files complaint about RCMP arrest of man who later died

Dale Culver, a 35-year-old Indigenous man was arrested in Prince George last July

Lawyer says former B.C. government aide ‘barely guilty’ in ethnic vote scandal

Brian Bonney pleaded guilty to a breach of trust charge

Song penned for Scotties Tournament of Hearts in Penticton

Curling Time released to celebrate Scotties Tournament of Hearts in Penticton

Quite a few tears as homemade quilts distributed to residents of Ashcroft Reserve, Boston Flats affected by last summer’s fire

Quilters in B.C. and Alberta worked through the summer and fall to create more than 100 quilts.

Island Health: No need for alarm in wake of Victoria needle-prick incidents

Three incidents in a week prompts meeting between health authority, city service providers

Most Read