NDP Leader expecting ‘placeholder’ budget

NDP Leader Adrian Dix says he doesn't expect much out of the BC Liberal government's budget that's being tabled today in the legislature.

NDP Leader Adrian Dix says he doesn’t expect much out of the BC Liberal government’s 2012 budget that’s being tabled today (Tuesday) in the legislature.

“It’s my sense this is a government that’s run out of gas,” he said, after meeting in Chilliwack with Gwen O’Mahony, the party’s candidate in the Chilliwack-Hope byelection.

But he does expect the budget will trigger a date for the byelection here and in the Port Moody-Coquitlam riding, sometime in March when the legislature is not sitting.

Meanwhile, the two ridings have not had a representative in Victoria since the resignations of BC Liberal MLAs Barry Penner and Iain Black.

“This is all about the Liberal party,” Dix said, about the delay. “The Liberals have taken their sweet time calling (the byelection).”

BC Liberals, however, have wasted no time holding Dix’s political feet to the

fire for the “steady stream of lavish spending promises” they say “will likely lead to drastic personal income tax increases.”

“It’s easy to make promises, it’s harder to explain how you are going to pay for them,” BC Liberal MLA Mary Polak said in a news release.

Dix said Tuesday that he expects the BC Liberals will table a “placeholder” budget “promising ‘we’re not going to be able to do very much.'”

Finance Minister Kevin Falcon is expected to deliver his budget speech at 3 p.m.