This is an open letter to Scott Hamliton, Liberal party MLA, North Delta:
I am, as one of your constituents, very upset by what has occurred with the breech of the mining tailings pond in the interior.
I am totally puzzled why your government has chosen over the past few years (2011 to 2014) to not issue compliance orders and/or significant (meaningful) fines or penalties to any mining operation not responding fully (i.e. with appropriate and scientifically provable corrective steps) to multiple "warnings" issued by the government.
Also, is there some reason why the token fines your government has in place, (of a few tens of thousands of dollars) has not been raised to a few millions of dollars?
Several tens of thousands of dollars in fines is chicken feed to the mining companies. Essentially, at such low fine levels they are at best a minor annoyance – the cost of doing business in B.C. – in essence a licence fee (to be paid after the fact), allowing any given company to pollute with virtual impunity.
Further, is there some reason why your government has not legislated compensation funds to be established (all mining companies, including their parent, subordinate, or affiliate companies to annually pay into), such that if any mining company wants to to exercise its "get out of jail free card" (declare bankruptcy) – that innocent third parties can be adequately and justifiably compensated, without draining the public purse?
I await your reply.
Bruce Holvick, North Delta