Alberta Minute: Municipal Deficits, Provincial Deficits, and Civil Liberties
Alberta Minute - Your weekly one-minute summary of Alberta politics.
This Week In Alberta:
- The Legislature is scheduled to sit this week, but that was true of last week too, and they didn't, so we can't be sure either way. While it's understandable that schedules are irregular during an emergency, transparency should still remain a priority.
- There is also a meeting of the Standing Committee on Public Accounts planned for this afternoon, we'll let you know whether that goes ahead or not.
- Meanwhile, the first $100 million from the federal government's orphan well cleanup fund will start to flow on Friday via the province's Site Rehabilitation Program. The program covers between 25% and 100% of a project's costs, depending on the oil and gas company's financial position.
Last Week In Alberta:
- It was revealed that the provincial government is considering allowing municipal governments to run deficits temporarily to help cope with the financial implications of the pandemic. Many municipalities have had runaway spending for years - how about they get their finances under control first before they start talking about borrowing even more money?
The provincial cabinet authorized the government to borrow an extra $25 billion through an order-in-council. Everyone understands that the current crisis has led to some difficult decisions, but $25 billion is more than $6,000 per Alberta, added on to the $20,000+ per Albertan we already owe. How on earth is this ever going to be paid back?
- Finally, the provincial government announced they plan to re-write Bill 10 which civil libertarians (including us) had expressed concerns about. This is an important win for those of us that believe in the rule of law, even during a crisis.
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