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“I am a Canadian, free to speak without fear, free to worship in my own way, free to stand for what I think right, free to oppose what I believe wrong, or free to choose those who shall govern my country. This heritage of freedom I pledge to uphold for myself and all mankind.” ~~ John G. Diefenbaker

BC NDP Forestry Parliamentary Secretary Ravi Kahlon bristled at the suggestion saying, ‘It doesn’t matter how you define it…call it whatever you want’

Parliamentary Secretary for the
forest ministry, Ravi Kahlon

Canfor’s latest announcement that it will be cutting back an additional 75 million board feet of production falls in the wake of comments by the newly appointed parliamentary secretary for the forest ministry, Ravi Kahlon, that there are “too many mills” operating in the province.

Kahlon made the comments during a radio interview with CHNL on Monday.

The actual forests minister, Doug Donaldson, has been virtually absent during the crisis and for communities like Vanderhoof, Houston, Prince George, Fort St. John or Bear Lake to be abruptly written-off by the minister’s underling is frankly unacceptable,” says BC Liberal forestry critic and Nechako Lakes MLA John Rustad.

Premier Horgan hand-picked his partisan hack Mr. Kahlon to launch a public relations campaign on behalf of an incompetent minister who is literally missing-in-action.”

Canfor announced on Tuesday that its Prince George, Polar, Houston and Fort St. John sawmills will be curtailed during the week after Labour Day.

In addition, the company’s sawmills in Vanderhoof and Houston will also transition to a four-day work week in September.

Kahlon made his comments in response to what many consider the worst crisis in the forest industry in 40 years.

When asked directly if the loss of more than 4,000 jobs is considered a crisis by the provincial government, Kahlon bristled at the suggestion saying: “It doesn’t matter how you define it…call it whatever you want.”
Forestry Critic John Rustad

I welcome the fact that the government is starting to adopt the 5-point forestry plan that the BC Liberals presented to John Horgan and the NDP almost three months ago,” Rustad added.

Minister Doug Donaldson is however creating market uncertainty by sending mixed signals about stumpage fees. On the one hand Donaldson says lowering stumpage fees would severely jeopardize Canada’s position in the softwood lumber dispute”, Rustad continued.

He then concluded by stating, “At the same time he is going on record as saying that ‘we are looking at ways for stumpage to be more responsive’ to lumber prices. Minister Donaldson has to make up his mind and be absolutely clear on stumpage fees in British Columbia.”

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