BC’s three major parties committed to a range of promises over the weekend, including new policies for rent relief and benefits for seniors.
Here’s a breakdown of what was announced by the NDP, Liberals, and Greens.
Liberals: a new seniors tax credit and $1 billion for long-term care
On Sunday, the BC Liberals announced they would introduce a new Seniors’ Home Care Tax Credit while also pledging a five-year $1-billion spend on long-term care homes.
Seniors would be able to expense 35 per cent of their home-care costs up to an annual limit of $20,000, for a maximum credit of $7,000 per year.
If the senior’s income exceeds $60,000, the credit is reduced by 3 per cent of the amount by which their income exceeds that amount, unless the senior is considered a dependent.
The party says they would spend $1 billion on care homes over five years in order to ensure every senior who wants a private room can have one, and to upgrade facilities to better safeguard against infection outbreaks.
The Liberals also promised on Sunday to halt the transition process for the Surrey police force, saying they would put the matter to a referendum.
NDP: ICBC rebates for drivers
The BC NDP said on Sunday that if re-elected they would offer a rebate to drivers based on profits generated by ICBC during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Rebates would be paid out on May 1, 2021, the same date as when the crown corporation moves to a new system.
The NDP says the new care-based system will save the average driver 20 per cent on their insurance rates.
No estimate was provided for how much drivers would receive in rebates. The NDP says that ICBC’s net income for the first quarter of 2020 was $311 million.
Greens: rebates for low-and-middle income renters
The BC Green Party announced on Sunday that they would bring in a new rental rebate aimed at supporting low-and-middle income tenants.
$500 million would be set aside by a Green government for low and moderate income earners who are paying more than 30 per cent of their income in rent.
The Green Party says that this support program would be means-tested, setting it apart from the NDP’s plans for a $400 rental rebate.
Income threshold amounts were not provided in the policy announcement.
With the election moving into its third week, more comprehensive policy platforms are expected from all three major parties.