Alberta Minute: COVID Contraversion, Border Reopens, and a Federal Election Call
Alberta Minute - Your weekly one-minute summary of Alberta politics.
This Week In Alberta:
The Alberta Legislature break continues until October 25th. Although committees of the Legislature have met sporadically over the summer, there are no meetings scheduled for this week.
In another surprising about-face, the provincial government announced that some Alberta COVID restrictions will, in fact, remain in place. The original plan was that, beginning on August 16th, there would be no more contact tracing or isolation requirements even if you were sick and tested positive for COVID. Mask requirements on public transit were also to be removed. The province is still planning to end contact tracing but delaying most other changes until Sept 27th.
- Some Albertans are facing sticker shock, as a heatwave and high power usage are leading to much higher power bills for Albertans on variable rates. In some cases, prices have tripled from 6 cents to 18 cents per kilowatt-hour for periods of time. It's important to remember, however, that those receiving higher than usual power bills now have also likely benefit from months (if not years) of lower prices thanks to their variable rates. Swings and roundabouts, people!
Last Week In Alberta:
Prime Minister Trudeau visited the newly installed Governor General on Sunday to trigger a federal election call for September 20th. Coming on top of the two planned provincial referenda and municipal elections, it will be a busy fall for Albertans at the polls. What's your top issue this federal election, and who are you voting for?
- The Canadian border reopened to fully vaccinated American travellers, finally providing some relief for Alberta's battered tourism sector. Edmonton International Airport began accepting international flights for the first time in more than a year. International visitors, other than from the US, are expected to be allowed to visit starting next month.
- A surprise provincial by-election will be required in the Fort McMurray-Lac La Biche riding after current provincial MLA Laila Goodridge announced last night she is stepping down to run in the federal Fort McMurray-Cold Lake riding. This comes in conjunction with another surprise, the announcement that current federal MP David Yurdiga will not be running for re-election. Definitely some musical chairs being played here - who might replace Laila Goodridge, we wonder?
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