Alberta Minute: New Cabinet, Recycling Costs, and Simultaneous Political Conventions
Alberta Minute - Your weekly one-minute summary of Alberta politics.
This Week In Alberta:
While the Legislature remains on break, the new Cabinet will be sworn in today. There is also one Committee meeting this week - the Standing Committee on the Alberta Heritage Savings Trust Fund will meet at 7:00 pm on Thursday. No agenda is available yet.
Premier Danielle Smith is seeking legal advice on how to pardon Albertans who received fines for violating COVID-19 regulations. She plans to look into the outstanding fines and see which are able to be cancelled. Smith has also apologized to government workers who were fired as a result of vaccine status and said she will welcome them back should they wish to come back to their jobs.
- Alberta is expected to see the smallest decline in home sales of all Canadian provinces this year, as the market cools across the country. Sales are expected to drop 22% next year as borrowing costs rise. A report from TD Economics says Alberta prices should recover in 2024.
Last Week In Alberta:
Premier Danielle Smith revealed her new cabinet. Tyler Shandro will remain the Minister of Justice, Jason Copping continues as Minister of Health, and Adriana LaGrange keeps her job as Minister of Education. Almost all of the leadership candidates were given cabinet positions - Brian Jean will be the Minister of Jobs, Economy and Northern Development; Rebecca Schulz was named Minister of Municipal Affairs; Todd Loewen will take on the Forestry, Parks and Tourism file; and Rajan Sawhney will be the Minister of Trade, Immigration and Multiculturalism.
- Both major provincial political parties held conventions over the weekend. The NDP held its convention in downtown Calgary and the UCP’s event took place on the Enoch Cree Nation, near Edmonton. Both Premier Danielle Smith and opposition leader Rachel Notley gave speeches. Smith addressed the need to stand up to the “NDP-Liberal coalition in Ottawa”, deal with the affordability crisis, and improve the health care system. Notley’s speech included promises to cap utility rates and post-secondary tuition, and freeze auto insurance rates. The events were largely viewed as campaign kick-offs for the upcoming 2023 election.
- The Province has started the process of shifting the cost of recycling away from municipalities and onto companies. In the past, municipalities have had to shoulder the cost of recycling through taxpayer money, but a new regulation comes into effect on November 30th that will see the manufacturer, importer, or retailer bearing the cost. Of course, we can expect businesses to simply pass the costs on to consumers through prices, so in the end, it's still us paying the bill.
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