Kamloops-North Thompson NDP candidate Kathy Kendall should explain or retract and apologize for remarks made at the Barriere All Candidates’ Forum on May 3, BC Liberal candidate Terry Lake said Tuesday.
In her opening statement at the forum organized by the North Thompson Star/Journal, Kendall repeated her previous claim that the local economy is suffering due to log exports from the region. She made similar claims at the Kamloops forum the previous night.
Challenged to explain this claim by local mill operator Carman Smith, Kendall replied only: “Well, I see them going down the road on trucks.” Pressed to further explain her statement, Kendall would only add, “That’s my answer.”
Logs are exported from the province only when it can be demonstrated that they are surplus to sawmills in BC. The British Columbia Log Export Permit Report issued for April 2013 shows that log exports for the entire Southern Interior region, which encompasses the entire interior area south of Prince George, account for 0.2 per cent of the timber harvest and less than one per cent of total log exports.
“Thousands of local families rely on forestry jobs for their living,” Lake said. “Barriere and our region deserve better than an NDP candidate who does not understand one of the most important economic drivers of the region and the province.”
“The trucks Ms. Kendall sees are en route to mills in Adams Lake, Barriere and other local operations,” Lake added. “Under the strong leadership of Premier Christy Clark and Today’s BC Liberals, forestry workers in the North Thompson are busy supplying local mills to support local families. If Kathy Kendall doesn’t understand that, she has little business trying to represent these families in the BC legislature.”