Hello Chestermere! Happy Canada Day! We are 151 years old this year. One would think after this many years we would know what is best for our province and for our country. As I look back on this past year it seems clear that we are more resilient than even we could have imagined. We have become more engaged and we are looking at those who govern us, asking questions and making sure that those of us who have the privilege of representing you are answering those questions. It is also imperative that we focus on the future, and on what unites us. It seems that our provincial government prefers to align with Federal Liberals and their priorities and certainly not those of Albertans. This week’s unbelievable decision to extend the equalization payments as they are for the next 5 years with out negotiation or even a conversation with this province that transfers billions to other provinces was nothing short of shocking. It was sneaky. Alberta has lost close to 7 billion in revenues from the downturn. We see pipelines die because the Federal government bows to mayors and other activists along the pipeline, and because of our “fiscal capacity” (our ability to generate revenue), there is no help coming folks. In fact, not only have both the federal and provincial governments made significant policy changes that handcuffs industry, the oil patch and pipelines to increase our fiscal capacity, they have jumped up and down for joy on the backs of hard working Albertans telling us its for our own good, and that this carbon tax is our saving grace. Where was our provincial government that was “agnostic” on equalization payments over a year ago when we informed them of the significant problems in the formula and the changes that had to be made in the negotiations? How does the Minister of Finance of Alberta justify having known about this while we were in session and not informing the Legislature? This is a shocking abdication of the NDP Government’s duty to stand up for you. Albertans should be outraged at this and Albertans deserve an answer.
Let’s move onto the pipeline that our federal government has now purchased along with all the problems like for example how to get to tidewater. It is an interesting scenario that we find ourselves in given the fact that the federal government had the jurisdiction to do this in the first place. I mean it was too risky for Kinder Morgan, so the government intervened, purchased this unquantifiable risk for 9x its value. Remember the old infrastructure is worth about 500 million, and we purchased this problem for 4.5 billion. If that is any foreshadowing of how this government is going to run this business, then we are all in a lot of trouble.
As you reflect this week on this 151st birthday of our country, our federation, and our sovereignty remember that we are stronger as a country together and we need to demand that our leaders lead! We must do better as a country and create wealth and prosperity for the people of this beautiful nation. We must demand that our leaders put Canada first and that they are the cheerleaders of our country, not the harbingers of its demise. We must work hard, stay humble and earn every vote. As representatives for you at the provincial level, you are our bosses. Please stay engaged, talk to your children and make sure they understand what they will be saddled with as a result of bad government policy like the looming 96 billion Provincial debt. Please make sure you have your memberships to be able to vote in the nomination contest for the United Conservative nomination (call 587-429-6465 or visit www.VoteLeela.com to join). I hope to earn and keep your vote in this contest to represent you in the next general election next year. As always we love to hear from you.