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B.C. premier ‘confused’ on reason for Quebec immigration funding: minister

Immigration Marc Miller says he believes B.C. Premier David Eby is “confused” on why Quebec is getting $750 million to help pay for a surge in temporary residents, namely for asylum seekers.

That comes after Eby suggested federal funding was being “showered” on Quebec after an offering announced on Monday.

“I think perhaps there was some confusion on the premier’s behalf as to what this money was for…. It’s to compensate Quebec for two fiscal years of costs they’ve incurred with respect to the disproportionate flow of asylum seekers,” Miller said Tuesday following the cabinet meeting in Ottawa.

At the closing news conference for the Western Premiers’ Conference on Monday, Eby said federal immigration is being “showered” on Ontario and Quebec “at the expense” of Western Canada.

“And so to see a single-province agreement with Quebec, is an underlining of a sense of frustration that I heard around the table,” Eby said, suggesting Western provinces are “scrabbling around for what’s left over. It’s not acceptable.”

Quebec Premier François Legault had said the offer from Ottawa came after he asked for $1 billion to cover costs associated with a surge in temporary residents.

Eby said Canadians are seeing resources go to Ontario and Quebec “at the expense, in my opinion, of the West.”

“That announcement today with Quebec, frankly, is the straw that broke this camel’s back,” he said on Monday.

“I cannot understand how that could happen. I cannot understand why we cannot get a per capita share at a minimum.”

Legault has previously said the number of temporary residents coming to the province — including asylum seekers, students and workers — had “exploded” to 560,000, a number he says doubled in two years, straining social services. The

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