Serving Woodbine, Woodlands, Evergreen, & Bridlewood
& participants/winners in the annual Evergreen Christmas Light Competition:
You are inspiration to community members in Calgary & right across Alberta!
Additionally, the Climate Change Plan (which was released with great fanfare just before the Paris Climate Conference) announced another monumental surprise for Albertans: a $3 billion carbon tax! I support measures such as capping emissions from the oilsands & limiting methane releases (initiatives that were already underway, by the way); but we need the rest of the world to pull its weight too; & in the meantime, the carbon tax (& accelerated phase-out of coal-fired power plants) will have major detrimental effects on Alberta families. The estimates of the cost of the carbon tax to the average Alberta family is in the neighbourhood of $1000/year; & yet, there was no warning of this before the election!
The controversy over Bill 6 has been well documented: even the NDP admit that it was poorly drafted, hastily announced, & dreadfully communicated. It caused anger & frustration that stretched across the Alberta: farmers & ranchers were incensed by the sheer arrogance of a gov’t that refused to listen to their concerns or to give clear answers to their legitimate questions. Our caucus proposed four amendments that would have dramatically improved the legislation, & each was voted down by the NDP--without a single dissenting vote. We introduced & supported motions to refer the Bill to Committee & delay the Bill's passage—at least until proper consultation had occurred--but the NDP used its majority to invoke closure…& pushed the legislation through anyway.
As critic (advocate) for Aboriginal relations, I have been asking hard questions of the gov’t on its declared plans to forge a new relationship with First Nations, Metis, & Inuit Albertans. I asked the Premier why there was not one single specific commitment in the throne speech regarding either the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People--or the Truth and Reconciliation Report--& interestingly enough, less than a week later, she apologized on behalf of Albertans for the government not taking a stand on the residential school system. I have continued to highlight the absence of relationship building--including the lack of Aboriginal membership on the Premier’s Council on Economic Development--& there is much more to do.
My PC MLA colleagues & I will continue to demand that the gov’t respect your hard earned tax dollars. We will push them to protect the jobs of Albertans, while committing to effective, robust, & transparent consultation, as they implement all sorts of new legislation. I am honoured to stand up for all Albertans—especially the citizens of Calgary-Lougheed--& if you have any ideas &/or require any assistance, please contact me. In the meantime, despite these difficult times, I hope that 2016 will be a great year for you!