Katrine Conroy cuts a ribbon at the opening of her campaign office in Castlegar on Saturday

NDP candidate opens campaign office in Castlegar

Katrine Conroy looking forward to getting on with the campaign

Katrine Conroy joined a growing list of B.C. politicians in opening a campaign office before the writ is dropped for the general election May 14.

The NDP candidate’s office in downtown Castlegar had about 30 supporters gathered on Saturday, April 13 as Conroy introduced her campaign team and mingled with volunteers who will be staffing phone lines and knocking on doors.

In an interview before addressing those gathered, Conroy said she was looking forward to the race being officially launched.

“We are excited,” she said. “We have a great team and I’m looking forward to getting on with the campaign.”

Conroy said one of the biggest differences between her run in this election from 2009, is that after four years she knows the area well and sees similar issues no matter where she goes.

“I can drive from the border to the northern parts of the riding and all of the small communities are unique and beautiful,” she said. “I think health care [will be a key issue]. Seniors are frustrated by the lack of support from the BC Liberals. Jobs and training will be another; young people who have to leave to get apprenticeships — we need to have a better relationship with Selkirk College and create opportunities to work with unions and provide training here.”

With balloons, banners, posters and signs as a backdrop, Conroy cut a ribbon officially marking the office open.

She told supporters she has been travelling across the province for the last couple of weeks, visiting 18-20 communities.

She said party leader, Adrian Dix, has a “totally costed plan” that the NDP would be up front with people about.

She reiterated that it’s about two per cent of the population of B.C. that will pay higher taxes if the NDP are elected; those making more than $150,000 per year.

Banks, she said, would see an increase of three per cent and credit unions with assets under $400,000 would see no increase.

She also hinted that a piece of the NDP election platform may be unveiled early next week.

“For 12 years the Liberals haven’t created jobs,” said Conroy. “We will roll out our platform in steps — not promising things we can’t deliver.”

She said that once the election is underway, it will be 28 days of “go-go-go”.

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