Premier keeps opinion on Highway 97 to herself

Premier Christy Clark kept her personal viewpoint private when asked which of the bypass or improvement options would be best for the future of Highway 97.

“I know there’s a lot of debate about how to fix it,” she told The View. “But I think we will get to a solution and Dan (Ashton, local MLA) is going to help make sure we steer that solution in the right direction, but I’m not going to impose an opinion on it, because then wherever we end up, people will think that I made it happen rather than listening to the people.”

Clark was asked about the highway while campaigning in the riding on Tuesday afternoon at Bad Tattoo Brewery in Penticton.

Similar to comments made by Ashton and employees of the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, Clark said the government is giving Peachland autonomy over the future of Highway 97.

“I want to do what the community wants,” she said, “and it’s probably going to be a tough decision because I know the commnity is really undecided about it, but I want to make sure we make the right decision so I’m really trying not to impose myself on it .”

Beyond the highway, voters who prefer a “bigger economy, not a bigger government” should reelect Ashton, she said.

In the face of rising American protectionism, the Donald Trump administration is “going after our forest industry;” it already went after our dairy industry, while apples, cherries and wine could all be next, Clark warns.

“We cannot let British Columbia be at risk.”

The Liberal Party’s efforts are about making things “better for the next generation,” she said.

Later that day in Kelowna, Clark said she loves how everybody there is happy and “Nobody’s got anything to complain about.”

Voters go to the polls on Tuesday.

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