Promises and Performance

Four years of Liberal rule on Prince Edward Island

The P.E.I. Liberal Party, led by Robert Ghiz, was elected in 2007 on the back of dozens of promises, presented in a series of news conferences on different themes over the course of the campaign.

With so many promises it can be difficult to keep track of them all.

CBC News has pulled the promises of the 2007 campaign down off the shelf in the P.E.I. newsroom. We examined how the government has performed, and what kind of job the opposition has done in holding the Liberals to the promises they made.

Over the course of the campaign CBC P.E.I. will host a series of online debates on those promises, and we have created a space for you to leave your opinion.

Click on a picture below for more information on the Liberal campaign promises of 2007, to leave a comment or read the comments of others, or to learn more about plans for the campaign debates.

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State of P.E.I.

Education

Health

Taxes

Rural Issues

Patronage, appointments & reports

Promise

"Coming in last is not acceptable. It’s time to stop the excuses." - Robert Ghiz

During the 2007 campaign, Liberal Leader Robert Ghiz made regular references to statistics that he said showed Islanders were worse off than other Canadians, and promised to fix those problems:

  • Had fewest number of doctors per 100,000 population. Promised family doctor for every Islander.
  • Per capita spending on drugs lowest in the country.
  • Ranked last in spending on post-secondary education as a percentage of total government spending, and said this was unacceptable.
  • Promised to improve two-year wait times for learning disability assessments.
  • Had second fewest police officers per 100,000 population.
  • More
  • Audio
  • Video

"Improved access to post-secondary education is an economic development issue." - Robert Ghiz

  • $2,000 bursary for Island students in their first year at UPEI (a similar bursary for Holland College).
  • Reduce or eliminate the cost of tuition for students in their fourth year of full-time studies on P.E.I.
  • Expand Best Start Program from birth to 18 months to birth to three years.
  • Legislate class sizes to 15 students or less for grades one to three.
  • Pay teachers average Atlantic Canadian salary.
  • End standardized testing until schools are funded at the national level.
  • Increase tax exemption for teachers buying classroom supplies from $500 to $1,000.
  • $1 million to boost salaries for early childhood educators.
  • More
  • Audio
  • Video

"We don't believe it's that big of a promise." - Robert Ghiz

  • A family doctor for every Islander.
  • Increase level of services in community hospitals
  • Implement a family doctor residency program
  • Work with the federal government and other provincial governments to establish a catastrophic drug program
  • Eliminate fees for emergency ambulance service
  • Develop a 10-year plan for rural healthcare with meaningful community input
  • Increase homecare funding to support enhanced access to nursing and medical services
  • More
  • Audio
  • Video

"This means Islanders are not going to see the huge seven or eight per cent increases they've seen in the past." - Wes Sheridan

  • Freeze property tax assessments, and re-evaluate how they are calculated.
  • Lower gas taxes.
  • Increase personal income tax exemptions with cost of living.
  • End mid-month price adjustments on petroleum products by the Island Regulatory and Appeals Commission.
  • exempt all childrens fitness equipment from provincial sales tax.
  • eliminate the PST on bicycles.
  • eliminate the PST on energy efficient appliances and goods.
  • More
  • Audio
  • Video

"Our rural communities, in particular, have declined the face of service cutbacks." - Robert Ghiz

  • Provide high speed internet access to rural communities
  • increase the level of services provided in community hospitals
  • Reduce flow of people from rural to urban areas
  • Split agriculture and fisheries portfolio
  • Offer post-secondary education remotely in rural areas
  • Establish low-interest loans for lobster fishermen.
  • More
  • Audio
  • Video

"A new government must ensure that our public service is freed from political taint." - Robert Ghiz

  • End political patronage.
  • End MLA appointments to executive council committees.
  • 10-year plan for public transit.
  • Plan for provincial museum.
  • Audited statement of government finances three months before election..
  • Appoint human rights education officer.
  • Appoint provincial ombudsman.
  • More
  • Audio
  • Video

Performance

"No more arbitrary numbers or shell games in the health care system." - Robert Ghiz

  • In 2009, P.E.I. was still last in number of doctors per 100,000 population. More than 6,000 waiting for doctor on patient registry in July 2011.
  • P.E.I. second last in the country in 2009 for government spending on drugs.
  • P.E.I. had the second lowest percentage of government spending on post-secondary education in the country in 2009, behind New Brunswick.
  • Initial assessments for learning disabilities in kindergarten within 90 days, but wait times still reported to be long for follow ups and in later grades.
  • Had fewest police officers per 100,000 population.
  • More

"The kindergarten teachers ... do not trust this government." - Olive Crane

  • Moved kindergarten into the public school system.
  • Since September 2008, 2,800 Island students have received a $2,000 bursary for their first year of post-secondary education.
  • No change in tuition for fourth year UPEI students.
  • Best Start Program expanded from birth to two years.
  • No legislation on class sizes, but class sizes for grades one to three reduced from 20 to 17.
  • In 2009, teacher salaries were at the Atlantic Canadian average.
  • Standardized testing continues, but using a Made-in-P.E.I. model.
  • No increased tax exemption for teachers buying classroom supplies.
  • $1 million added to budget to increase salaries of early childhood educators.
  • More

"If we can ensure that certain emergency room professionals are there government will re-evaluate the situation." - Robert Ghiz

  • More than 6,000 Islanders waiting for family doctor on patient registry.
  • Record number of doctors practising on P.E.I., up from two to five nurse practitioners, hours at emergency department in Montague reduced.
  • Family doctor residency program launched in 2009.
  • P.E.I. one of two provinces without a catastrophic drug program.
  • Emergency ambulance fees eliminated for seniors and for out-of-province service.
  • No rural healthcare plan developed.
  • Homecare funding increased.
  • More

"We're not happy with the definition as it is in the bill, and what he's explaining market value is." - Jim Bagnall

  • Property tax assessments frozen until 2010, then tied to cost of living.
  • Lowering gas taxes by 4.4 cents per litre was one of the new government's first acts.
  • Personal income tax exemptions increased in 2007 and 2008, but unchanged since.
  • IRAC schedule for fuel price adjustments unchanged.
  • Childrens fitness equipment still charged provincial sales tax.
  • Bicycles still charged provincial sales tax.
  • Energy efficient appliances and goods still charged provincial sales tax.
  • More

"It includes wiping out the hog industry, desecrating our beef industry, shutting down the emergency departments in most of our rural hospitals and closing eight rural schools." - Mike Currie

  • Virtually every home on P.E.I. now has access to some form of high-speed internet
  • Reduced access to emergency medical services in eastern P.E.I.
  • Urbanization of province continues
  • Agriculture has dedicated minister, fisheries combined with rural development
  • Holland College programs expanded into rural areas
  • Low-interest loans provided for lobster fishermen
  • Closed eight schools in rural areas due to declining enrolment
  • Moved departments of education and fisheries outside of Charlottetown
  • More

"People are now calling us and saying they're not putting their names forward because they think it's just full of patronage." - Olive Crane

  • Political patronage continues at high levels.
  • MLA appointments to executive council committees reduced.
  • No long-term plan for public transit.
  • Plan for provincial museum could be released during election campaign.
  • Audited statement provided five weeks before election.
  • Funding provided for human rights education officer, but not appointed.
  • P.E.I. only province without an ombudsman.
  • More

Your Comments

"Our children's futures are being put at risk by people who are afraid to say we've failed." - Brook40

Debate

During the election campaign P.E.I.'s political parties will be invited to debate the state of P.E.I. online in open debates on Sept. 13 and Sept. 29 at 6:30 p.m.
During the election campaign P.E.I.'s political parties will be invited to debate education online on Sept. 15 at 6:30 p.m.
During the election campaign P.E.I.'s political parties will be invited to debate health online on Sept. 20 at 6:30 p.m.
During the election campaign P.E.I.'s political parties will be invited to debate taxes and the economy online on Sept. 22 at 6:30 p.m.
During the election campaign P.E.I.'s political parties will be invited to debate rural issues online on Sept. 27 at 6:30 p.m.
During the election campaign P.E.I.'s political parties will be invited to debate Patronage, appointments & reports online in open debates on Sept. 13 and Sept. 29 at 6:30 p.m.