Dan Brooks (left) campaigns in Salmon Arm for the leadership of the B.C. Conservatives.

Brooks defeats B.C. Conservative ‘old guard’

Dan Brooks wants permanent settlement of aboriginal land claims, sale of Crown lands to stimulate economy

Dan Brooks says his election to replace John Cummins as leader of the B.C. Conservative Party represents a break from the “old guard” and a new era of stability for a party mainly known for in-fighting.

Brooks, 38, took 62% of the approximately 1,150 party members who voted. He defeated Rick Peterson, a 59-year-old investment banker who was endorsed by Cummins.

“It was a great blessing to me when John Cummins and that crew endorsed Rick,” Brooks said Monday. “At that very moment, quite frankly, I thought ‘I’ve just won this.’ And I think they misjudged the depth of feeling in the party.”

A former guide-outfitter, Brooks handed over his resort business near Vanderhoof to a partner and relocated to Kamloops to pursue his political career. He hopes to appeal to urban voters by emphasizing the steep increase in B.C.’s debt in the Christy Clark era of B.C. Liberal rule.

Brooks agrees with Clark’s emphasis on liquefied natural gas development, but says there is a “myopic” focus on one strategy while problems continue in forestry, mining and regions outside the north.

Brooks opposes revenue sharing agreements with aboriginal groups, which the B.C. Liberal government has extended from forests to mining and most recently to LNG development.

“I think we have to resolve land claims definitely, not this indefinite accommodate and consult that really just perpetuates this uncertainty problem that we face,” Brooks said. “I know a lot of Conservatives don’t share this view, but I personally don’t have a problem with settling land claims by giving First Nations land.”

The government’s proposal to divide the agricultural land reserve into two zones is a good step, but it doesn’t go far enough, Brooks said. The provincial economy suffers with 95% of all land owned by the province.

“Imagine if you opened that up and started selling public land to private individuals, settled land claims with first nations by giving them some land, imagine what it would do for our economy?” Brooks said.

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

WATCH: Yale firefighters fight late night cabin fire in Spuzzum

Neighbours started fighting fire until crews arrived an hour later

Chilliwack youth planning solidarity march against racism

Organizer hoping to ‘create a type of a energy in the city that we will not be silent about racism’

Fraser River freshet peak is coming soon

Predictions for 2020 by River Forecast Centre has the freshet peak at the Mission gauge for June 4-5

Virtual public hearing set for developer with plans to subdivide Willow Street lot

People can submit comments in advance, or call to be added to a speakers list, ahead of June 3rd hearing

Cyclist in his 50s victim of fatal crash near Hope Thursday

Police have ruled out speed, impairment as factors after a tractor-trailer struck a man in his 50s

B.C. records four new COVID-19 cases, Abbotsford hospital outbreak cleared

Four senior home outbreaks also declared over, eight still active

RCMP, coroner investigate murder-suicide on Salt Spring Island

Two dead, police say there is no risk to the public

About 30% of B.C. students return to schools as in-class teaching restarts amid pandemic

Education minister noted that in-class instruction remains optional

Trudeau avoids questions about anti-racism protesters dispersed for Trump photo-op

Prime minister says racism is an issue Canadians must tackle at home, too

B.C.’s Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics goes virtual

The annual event partnering RCMP with Special Olympians is dramatically altered by COVID-19

Bateman program encourages people to sketch outside, connect with nature

#MyNatureSketch initiative encourages Canadians to become ‘bright-eyed three year olds’

Be cautious expanding COVID-19 bubble, Dr. Bonnie Henry tells B.C.

Senior homes stay off-limits as schools, businesses reopen

VIDEO: Yarrow’s Corwin Drew in final four of Vancouver Whitecaps Academy skills competition

The soccer star is looking for community support to get him through the next round of online voting

Most Read