Alberta Minute: New Year, Double Standards, and Fiscal Flows Broken
Alberta Minute - Your weekly one-minute summary of Alberta politics.
This Week In Alberta:
- Happy New Year! Wherever you rang in 2021, from Calgary to Cabo, Edmonton to El Paso, St. Albert to St. Barts, Medicine Hat to Maui, Fort McMurray to Fort Lauderdale, Grande Prairie to Grand Cayman, Lethbridge to Los Angeles, or Red Deer to Rio de Janeiro, we hope you found a relaxing way to enjoy yourself while saying good riddance to 2020.
- 2021 is a very important year in Alberta politics. As of this week, there are now just 41 weeks until Albertans vote in referenda on abolishing equalization, creating an Alberta Constitution, adding property rights to that Alberta Constitution, replacing the RCMP with an Alberta Police Service, and introducing an Alberta Pension Plan, scheduled to occur in conjunction with municipal elections held in October. We'll be helping organize campaigns on these issues, so if you'd like to help, please consider volunteering, or making a donation.
- The Legislature in Edmonton is, of course, still on break, with no information posted yet about when it will reconvene, but we will keep you posted. The next Committee meeting will be a meeting of the Standing Committee on Resource Stewardship, on Wednesday, January 13, 2021.
Last Week In Alberta:
- Headlines across the province were dominated by news that several politicians, government officials, and their political staff avoided local ordinances banning family gatherings during the holidays by travelling abroad with their family and friends. Clearly the health risks from travel aren't actually that bad if so many of our decision-makers felt safe taking a holiday. The real problem here isn't politicians travelling, it's the double-standard - politicians who denied Albertans the freedom to celebrate Christmas down the street while gathering uninhibitedly with their family in tropical destinations. We suspect this story will go on for quite some time.
- Fairness Alberta published an excellent opinion piece regarding the federal government's recent changes to the fiscal stabilization program. They write: "Clearly, fiscal flows between Alberta and Ottawa are broken. This type of unfairness is why so many Albertans are demanding drastic changes to the federation, up to and including separation." Give it a read, as the separation issue looks set to continue dominating headlines in Alberta throughout 2021.
- Tragically, Calgary Police officer Sgt. Andrew Harnett was killed during a traffic stop, when two men allegedly took off in their SUV, striking and dragging the officer. Adding to this immense tragedy, Sgt. Harnett's widow is currently pregnant with the couple's first child. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family, friends, and colleagues of Sgt. Harnett during this unimaginably difficult time. Those wishing to send messages of condolence to Sgt. Harnett's family may do so by sending an email to: [email protected]
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