The premier found himself defending the speculation tax at a forestry announcement this week.

John Horgan was taking the heat for his government sending out notices in communities where the speculation tax is in effect, that will ask people to declare whether or not their home is occupied in order to get a tax exemption.

The Liberals are arguing levying the tax and then forcing people to apply for exemptions is backwards and misguided.

Horgan disagrees.

“The counter argument is, dear speculator, please identify yourself and I am not confident that’s the best way to identify speculation.”

The idea is, by applying the speculation tax in select communities, including Nanaimo and the District of Lantzville, owners of empty homes will be encouraged to put the homes into the rental market or sell them and that will address the affordability issue and put more rental homes on the market.