Hundreds of billions worth of construction projects are on the drawing board in B.C. As a result, most construction contractors geared up for even more work this year, despite an already intense pace. This will keep the industry’s GDP and employment contributions growing at the same pace as the provincial economy.
There is a solution to the runaway public pay in B.C. – a Public-Private Compensation Equity act that could take the politics out of setting pay for government workers – and some the sting out of taxes for the taxpayers. ICBA President Philip Hochstein highlighted the idea in a letter to the Vancouver Sun in response to a column and Fraser Institute report issued yesterday. The letter is below.
The Vancouver Sun’s Don Cayo has an excellent column today on the pay premium in the public sector – based on a new report from the Fraser Institute. The findings are that B.C. public-sector workers (federal, provincial, and local) earned wages 13.6 per cent higher, on average, than their private-sector counterparts. That’s just wages – it doesn’t include the richer benefits and longer vacation times enjoyed by civil servants.
ICBA looked at the trend – and its economic impacts – in its Summer 2012 Construction Monitor. Given recent raises in the public sector it’s clear that governments of every level are making paycheques smaller for taxpayers so the already bigger paycheuqes for bureaucrats of every level can continue to grow and grow.
By Philip Hochstein, President ICBA
The year is almost over and the calendar is set to turn to 2013. It’s been a busy year for ICBA, for our members, and our industry. Every indication is that the coming year should be busier.
Just last month we completed our annual wage and benefits survey for the industry. Across the board construction firms are confident about the year ahead. In fact, half expect their volume of work to grow in the coming year. That’s the kind of confidence we haven’t seen since the pre-Olympic boom – and before the global economic downturn. Read more
B.C.’s construction industry has a proud history. Name a landmark in this province – and we’ve built it. The BC Legislature. BC Place. Canada Place. The Shangri La Hotel.
And if that landmark has been built in the last 35 years, it’s a safe bet it was built by members of the Independent Contractors and Businesses Association of B.C. and the Open Shop. The 1,200 companies who make up the ICBA are the heart of the Open Shop that builds more than 90 per cent of the commercial, industrial, and multi-family residential projects in B.C. Read more
Construction Monitor report draws link between lower taxes and strong economy
A strong economy is the backbone of B.C.’s construction industry – which is why the Independent Contractors and Businesses of B.C. have released a short report on risks that come from increasing taxes.
“There’s plenty of talk in the political realm about raising taxes – whether it’s across the board or targeted to companies and high-earning private-sector individuals,” said ICBA President Philip Hochstein. “But our latest report draws the connection for people that any tax increase is like an anchor on the economy – something that hurts everyone.” Read more
The Independent Contractors and Businesses Association of B.C. services and represents B.C.’s construction sector. ICBA’s 1,100 members build in the multi-family residential and Industrial, Commercial and Institutional (ICI) construction sectors and are involved in virtually all major capital projects in British Columbia.