British Columbia’s Attorney General is firing back at threats by Alberta United Conservative Party (UCP) leader Jason Kenney to “turn off the taps” and restrict gasoline shipments on day one, if he’s elected premier.
“We have been concerned about the constitutionality of that legislation since it was introduced in Alberta’s legislature,” said David Eby on Monday.
“Our government is prepared to act through the courts if they proceed in that way.”
Earlier Monday, Kenney renewed his threat to use legislation to cut oil and gas shipments to B.C. if it continues to “obstruct” the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.
“In recent days, Lower Mainland B.C. has been paying through the nose for gasoline,” said Kenney.
WATCH: Kenney would use turn-off-the-taps legislation against B.C.
“Unless John Horgan ends his unconstitutional fight against Alberta energy exports, the people of B.C. will need to get used to paying well over $1.70/L for gas as the result of NDP anti-pipeline obstructionism.”
The Alberta NDP passed Bill 12 — legislation to direct truckers, pipeline companies and rail operators on how much product could be shipped and when — last spring. However, the bill was not proclaimed into force or used.
Kenney slammed the NDP for not using the legislation, calling it a “phony fight for pipelines.”
“Within an hour of being sworn in, we will hold a cabinet meeting, and the first item on the agenda will be to proclaim into law bill 12, the ‘turn off the taps’ legislation,” he said.
Eby’s response echoes his answer to Alberta last May, when he penned a letter to Justice Minister Kathleen Ganley calling Bill 12 unconstitutional.
“I would urge your government to commit not to proclaim Bill 12 into force until it has referred it to the Alberta courts to assess its constitutionality,” wrote Eby at the time.
“In the absence of such a commitment, I intend to instruct counsel to bring an action challenging its constitutional validity in the courts of Alberta.”
-With files from Richard Zussman
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