Hello Chestermere! Welcome to winter! I have been travelling the province this weekend for Alberta Culture Days and have had an amazing time meeting and seeing so many of you out and about enjoying the hundreds of activities and sessions that are available all over the province. When it comes to celebrating our culture and communities Albertans seem immune to the mucky, wet and cold weather. Thank you for inviting me to your wonderful events. I have been very touched by the people, culture and warm receptions across our magnificent province.
Did you know the Chestermere Public Library is displaying works by local artists? Be sure to check out feature artist Maxine McKellar. Maxine was a trailblazer for women in our Armed Forces in the highly skilled trade of airframe welder. You have probably seen her proudly wearing the uniform as Colour Guard Commander at the Chestermere Remembrance Day ceremonies. Now retired, she divides her time between Chestermere and Mexico and draws her inspiration from both places. “Then and Now”, hanging above Chester the Library Pup, is a personal summation of her life’s journey. Maxine is living proof that there is nothing our young women can’t accomplish.
“Support Canadian Energy” was the theme of this year’s AUMA in Edmonton. Premier Kenney delivered a forceful speech that was uplifting and truthful about the state of our finances in this province, and how we will solve those problems together, unified, and in a thoughtful and common-sense way. Thank you to our Mayors, Reeves and Councilors who spoke about concerns vital to our province and our municipalities. We will get our finances worked out together. We have overspent in this province for years, and it will take all of us together to turn this around, to make sure we are not mortgaging our children’s futures, and to make sure that needed services are provided. We are faced with an environment of low prices for our resources, lack of pipeline capacity, and restrictions on natural gas storage. These are key issues that handcuff our province and our country’s prosperity. We are actively working on strategies to overcome these issues, and I would like to thank Associate Minister Nally on his work with the Canadian Energy Regulator facilitating more access to the Trans Canada Pipeline System for gas going into storage during maintenance of the lines, which will help with volatility in the market. It is a short-term solution, but will help to stabilize prices. We want to revitalize the sector and attract investment.
We have recently met with the co-chairs of SAIT and NAIT to find ways to meet labour demands in our Province. Minister Nicolaides, the Minister of Advanced Education, has created a task force that will look at skilled trades, and encouraging more of our youth to pursue employment in these fields. We hope to streamline getting credentials and training to really inspire more people to look to these areas. “Skills matter”, and we hope to help accelerate successful high paying careers.
We will be holding our Alberta Advantage Immigration Strategy Consultations on October the 3 in Langdon at the Firehouse Grill. For more information and to attend, please contact my office at 403-207-9889.
I write to you not as a legislator or minister but as a mother with deep sadness over the loss of 2 young men, one to opioids and the other to a car crash. We also have 2 other young men in the hospital due to drug overdoses at a house party. I wish I had some wisdom to offer, some words to help with the pain, but I just have tears and my deepest condolences for those who have lost their precious babies. To the families, we are with you, and you are in our thoughts and prayers. Our communities rally around our families and these families will need all of us in the upcoming weeks and months as they come to terms with the trauma that they have endured. Please hug your children close to you, talk to them about their lives, and we as their village must always be there to help our families in times of need. As always we love to hear from you.