On Tuesday I attended the 2014 spring sitting of the first session of the 33rd Yukon Legislative Assembly. The thing that struck me the most was the lack of transparency shown on behalf of this government.
The premier sees no reason to register lobbyists. I for one would like to see lobbyists registered. I have to register my dog with the City of Whitehorse. I fail to see the problem with registering lobbyists.
I am not so worried about the Salvation Army or others the government’s leader brought up as examples of hardship if they had to register. What I am worried about are those lobbyists that can afford $300 cruises around English Bay, getting the ear of government to no doubt express their desire for low royalties and taxes on the natural resources they exploit.
The premier ridiculed the leader of the Opposition suggesting she would ruin the territory with high royalties on natural resources mined in the Yukon. Perhaps a quick comparison is in order on which path would be better for the citizens of the Yukon to follow, high or low royalties.
The province of Alberta and Great Britain have followed the path of low royalties, whereas Norway followed the path of high royalties and government intervention. Currently Norway has banked over $800 billion of revenue generated from its oil fields in the North Sea, while Great Britain frittered away this resource and is mired in a $2 trillion debt. Alberta hasn’t added anything to its heritage fund for years and is mired in debt as well.
It is time the premier acted in the best interests of the citizens of the Yukon, instead of special interests that have the premier’s ear for the night on a yacht.