Skeena-Bulkley Valley MP Nathan Cullen is setting his sights on helping small businesses flourish in the northwest in the new year.
“We’ve got some ideas about helping small businesses and creating new energy projects. The federal government still stands in the way, it’s not even that they’re not helping, they’re actually hindering,” said Cullen.
“So getting the federal government turned towards creating small and medium businesses in Canada would be fantastic, particularly for the northwest because there’s such a strong entrepreneurial spirit.”
Cullen specifically hopes to bring back the small business hiring tax credit, a program the Conservatives cancelled a few years ago.
When small businesses hire new employees, they will see a “benefit on their taxes.”
“If we were able to get the government to see the wisdom in this and bring it back that would be a great benefit,” he said.
Cullen also hopes to put an emphasis on creating clean energy jobs.
“The government should drop its subsidies of dirty fuels and look at different ways that they can help the clean energy sector which produces a lot more jobs, by the way,” he added. “We know we have a lot of potential for green energy (in the northwest).”
When it comes to pipelines however, Cullen said he doesn’t believe the controversial Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline will disappear.
“Ideally, I’d love to see the Enbridge Northern Gateway go away, so we can focus on the positive things that are going on in the northwest,” he said. “I don’t think that’s going to happen in 2015, I think the company just has too much Chinese money backing its commercials and desire to keep arguing for this pipeline.”
Cullen already has a busy schedule heading into the new year.
He plans to continue touring Skeena and B.C. to garner support for his bill to ban supertankers from transporting oil across the north coast of B.C.
So far, he’s visited 30 communities and aims to get 100,000 signatures in 100 days.