SASKATOON — Scott Moe is the next premier of Saskatchewan.
It took five ballots in the preferential system for the the former environment minister to win the Saskatchewan Party leadership.
Moe takes over from Brad Wall, who has consistently ranked as one of the country’s most popular and well-known premiers.
Wall called it quits last August when public anger was lingering over an austerity budget and his government was stinging from scandals.
He pitched his departure as an opportunity for renewal within the Saskatchewan Party, which has been in power since 2007.
Moe will lead a province in a very different fiscal position than the one Wall enjoyed during much of his tenure.
Low resource prices have led to large public deficits despite a recent increase to the provincial sales tax and deep program cuts.
An investigation into a government land deal is in the hands of out-of-province prosecutors and could lead to charges.
The government is locked in a fight with the federal Liberals over Saskatchewan’s refusal to bring in a carbon tax, and is feuding with Alberta over trade issues.