Greater Victoria School District concerned about new employer health tax

The Greater Victoria School District figures it will be out $2-million by the time the BC Government scraps MSP premiums in 2020 --  all thanks to the new "employer health tax" for businesses with more than half a million dollars in payroll.

While acknowleding there will be an initial savings of about a half million for the current school year, the district says they will also incur costs as the years progress.

But Fleming argues districts are being allowed to keep the savings this year, adding funding in the K-to-12 system in BC has never been higher:

" We've lowered the cost of broadband internet service by $10-million this year, we've got $60-million in pension contgribution savings that have been returned to school distircts. So, record levels of funding, plus internal savings that have been handed back to school districts.  We haven't clawed them back as the BC Liberals used to do. We've said to school distircts use these to strengthen education programs, spend them on kids and learning resources in the classroom."

Fleming says there will be a transition over the next few years to the payroll tax, but for now tens of millions are being returned to the school districts.

Meantime the Victoria School Board has written to the minister asking that any increased costs associated with the new tax be funded.T

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