Premier Jason Kenney was in town Saturday where he unveiled his plans to further Alberta’s interests. File photo

Kenney’s plan to advance Alberta’s interest receives mixed reviews

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

That’s how Laura feels about Premier Jason Kenney’s Fair Deal Panel.

The Calgary resident was in Red Deer Sunday. She said she doesn’t understand exactly what Kenney is trying to solve with his new plan.

“It sounds like an opportunity to create more bureaucracy,” she said.

Kenney’s Fair Deal Panel, which will include former Reform Party leader Preston Manning, will consult with Albertans on ideas such as establishing a provincial revenue agency, withdrawing from the Canada Pension Plan in favour of a new provincial agency and establishing a formalized provincial constitution.

The point of the panel, Kenney explained, is to secure a fair deal for Alberta and advance Alberta’s economic interests, such as the construction of energy pipelines.

Kenney noted that several of the ideas are borrowed from Quebec, such as collecting taxes and seeking provincial representation in treaty negotiations that affect Alberta’s interests.

Laura understands Alberta’s main concern – pipelines – and wants the premier to focus on the problem itself instead of adding more layers of bureaucracy.

“If there’s a problem, then name that problem and let’s work together to fix it, but just creating anger and that notion that ‘we’re upset about something’ and using these levers and tools as if that’s going to resolve the issue of the pipeline, it doesn’t seem like a reasonable approach.”

She said she doesn’t understand the advantages of some of the points in the plan such as creating a provincial policing agency. It may just create more isolation between the community and police officers, she explained.

Red Deer resident Barry is in agreement with the premier’s new plan. The senior resident said Kenney is ready to make some moves and hopefully “for us they’ll work.”

A provincial plan instead of the Canada Pension Plan might serve senior Albertans better, he said Sunday.

“They’re down in the low ranks and they can use and should have a greater source of revenue. I’m an elderly and I can certainly use that,” he said.

Barry said overall he is excited about the premier’s plan for Albertans.

“It can’t hurt us,” Barry said with a chuckle.


Kenney puts Alberta pension plan, police force and tax collection agency up for study

Dennis, a senior Red Deer resident, feels the plan further isolates Alberta from Canada, and does not agree with Kenney’s new vision.

“In Canada, we’re one nation,” he said.

“What it does is it makes us look like fools in the eyes of other Canadians.”

Alberta’s NDP leader Rachel Notley notes Kenney’s remarks are “dangerous” and that he did not campaign on any of these issues.

She said Kenney is intentionally stoking the fires of western alienation in order to advance his own political objectives.

“Instead of getting to work on the priorities of Albertans; getting the pipeline built, growing our economy, and creating jobs, he is exploiting the real frustrations of everyday Albertans by sowing the seeds of separation with tired ideas from decades ago. Alberta is part of Canada, and Jason Kenney needs to accept that.

“Kenney never talked to Albertans about putting their pensions in jeopardy in the last election and Albertans cannot trust him to be anywhere near their retirement savings, she said.

In his Saturday’s speech Kenney rejected the separatist notion, citing it would not make it any easier to get a pipeline built for a landlocked Alberta.

With files from the Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Maskwacis RCMP investigating after discovery of human remains

Maskwacis RCMP are investigating following the discovery of human remains near Highway… Continue reading

Man reported missing

Anyone with information can contact Red Deer RCMP

Budget day: Alberta government planning to balance books, boost employment

EDMONTON — It’s budget day in Alberta. And while the United Conservative… Continue reading

Workplace inclusion forum set for March 4

A Red Deer Local Immigration Partnership event

VIDEO: Grumpy sea lion resists help back to water in Washington state

Crews were able to coax her into a crate to carry her back to water

Your community calendar

Feb. 19 A Liberation of Holland event is being held at the… Continue reading

B.C. boy wins hockey stick from NHL hero in a game of rock, paper, scissors

An 11-year-old Shuswap, B.C., boy beat his NHL hero at rock, paper,… Continue reading

Young Sylvan Lake burn survivor sharing his story to inspire others

Eleven-year-old burn survivor Kaden Howard hopes his experience will help other people… Continue reading

Hardy Red Deerians ready to take the plunge

More than 50 plungers will brave freezing water to support Special Olympics… Continue reading

Trudeau marooned in no man’s land

Hope and fear are the most powerful emotions in politics. Unfortunately, Justin… Continue reading

Lawyers: New evidence backs Loughlin, Giannulli’s innocence

BOSTON — Lawyers for “Full House” actress Lori Loughlin and her fashion… Continue reading

Defending champion Kevin Koe one of the headliners in strong Brier field

KINGSTON, Ont. — With four national men’s curling titles to his credit,… Continue reading

Montreal’s Felix Auger-Aliassime ousted at Mexican Open by Britain’s Kyle Edmund

MEXICO CITY — Canadian qualifier Leylah Annie Fernandez has reached the quarterfinals… Continue reading

Most Read