Message from the Premier and
I am pleased to present the Service Plan for the Office of the Premier for the period of April 2006 through March 2009. This plan is presented in accordance with Section 13 of the Budget Transparency and Accountability Act.
The Office of the Premier leads government in its mandate to advance the Five Great Goals, build a new relationship with First Nations and continue our commitment to fiscal responsibility, transparency and accountability.
The Five Great Goals will place British Columbia at the top in literacy, healthy living, social support, environmental management and job creation. To achieve the Five Great Goals the Office of the Premier provides overall management and strategic direction to government.
The Five Great Goals are to:
- Make B.C. the best-educated, most literate jurisdiction on the continent.
- Lead the way in North America in healthy living and physical fitness.
- Build the best system of support in Canada for persons with disabilities, those with special needs, children at risk and seniors.
- Lead the world in sustainable environmental management, with the best air and water quality, and the best fisheries management, bar none.
- Create more jobs per capita than anywhere else in Canada.
Including our First Nations people in achieving the Five Great Goals means success for all British Columbians. “We are all here to stay” are the first words of the “New Relationship” document which was signed by the First Nations and the government of British Columbia in 2005. The document marks the beginning of a new understanding and relationship between First Nations and the provincial government and sets out goals and actions based on respect, recognition and accommodation of Aboriginal titles and rights.
Government recognizes the importance of working together with all British Columbians so that BC can achieve its full potential. Positive changes in democratic and legislative reform have taken place: election and budget dates are now set, there are free votes in the legislature, and the dormant committee system of the Legislature has been revived so that individual MLAs have greater opportunities to explore issues of long-term significance to the province.
Government is also exploring new ways of improving the effectiveness of the Legislature for British Columbians by working with the Official Opposition to elevate the level of constructive debate and decorum in the House. This includes appointing a second Deputy Speaker of the House from the ranks of the Opposition; doubling the length of Question Period from 15 minutes to 30 minutes — the first extension of Question Period since it was first held in 1973; and inviting the Official Opposition to chair and have majority membership on a Special Legislative Committee on Sustainable Aquaculture. I would like to acknowledge the support of the Official Opposition as government strives to improve and modernize the rules of conduct in the House.
All of the above are progressive steps to assist BC to achieve the Five Great Goals and ensure effective and integrated government services that reflect today’s realities and needs of BC’s citizens.
The 2006/07–2008/09 Office of the Premier Service Plan was prepared under my direction in accordance with the Budget Transparency and Accountability Act. I am accountable for the basis on which the plan has been prepared. All material fiscal assumptions and policy decisions as of February 16, 2006, have been considered in preparing the plan, and I am accountable for achieving the specific objectives in the plan.
Honourable Gordon Campbell
February 16, 2006