NDP Rural Caucus co-chair Doug Hart opening the meeting of the agriculture-focused meeting of NDP MLAs and representatives of the stakeholder organizations at the ag event centre in Ponoka on Friday

NDP reaches out to rural Alberta, reeve asks for faster Internet

Thirteen MLAs attended a rural caucus meeting at the ag event centre last week.

Doug Hart, co-chair of the rural caucus of Alberta’s governing NDP, was pleasantly surprised Friday morning, Aug. 28, when 13 MLAs turned up for a meeting in Ponoka on agricultural matters instead of the expected nine, an indication that the NDP leadership is making an effort to engage rural Alberta to ensure that they are seen as the party of all Albertans and not only of their urban voter base.

Participants at the meeting included representatives of various rural and agricultural organizations with their focus areas ranging from rural infrastructure to food security to surface rights.

The meeting was closed to the media after the opening session, which, according to Hart, was aimed at allowing the participants to speak freely and ask any questions they may need answers for without any other considerations.

Bruce Hinkley, former head of the NDP rural caucus and now the Wetaskiwin MLA at the provincial legislature, said during a break at the meeting that the event was conceived of as a platform to establish the communication lines between the stakeholders of rural Alberta and the NDP leadership.

“This is going to lead to new policies to help to move on to making Alberta a better place,” Hinkley said.

He added that they wanted to show to rural constituents that NDP did not have an agenda based on a rural-urban split and to make sure that they would have heard the voice of the rural stakeholders before embarking on generating long term policies. .

Hinkley said while the meeting was not the beginning of a series of similar events, it was going to lead to increased networking between rural and agricultural organizations and the NDP MLAs and more contacts and interaction at the bilateral level.

The rural organizations represented at the meeting were National Farmers Union, Alberta Growing Food Security Network, AAMDC, Alberta Rural Electrification Alliance, Association of Agricultural Societies, Surface Rights Group, among others.

Speaking at opening session, Ponoka County Reeve Paul McLauchlin singled out Internet as a particular area where rural Alberta needed help to improve agricultural practices.

 

He said Youtube had changed the way the younger generation was getting information on farming practices and that better access to Internet had become a key for farming communities to keep up with the rapid changes in the agricultural world.

Just Posted

Kittens rescued after allegedly being tossed from vehicle

Couple finds abandoned kittens new home through Facebook

Semi collides with vehicle on Highway 2

Members of the Ponoka Integrated Traffic Unit dealt with a call on Highway 2 north of Ponoka

Standing room only at Ponoka Legion Remembrance Day ceremony

Strong support for Remembrance Day shown by Ponoka residents.

Ponoka based team ropers add CFR crown to their world championship

Simpson, Buhler storm back to win Canadian championship; Green beats Thurston in saddle bronc

Inmate at Bowden Institution dies

Corrections Canada continues to investigate circumstances surrounding death

Dead boy’s father posts Facebook response after Appeal Court upholds conviction

David, Collet Stephan were found guilty in their son Ezekiel’s 2012 death from bacterial meningitis

Bank of Canada cautious of future rate hikes

The Bank of Canada remains cautious on future rate hikes due to low- inflation risk

London theatre received allegations against Kevin Spacey

The theatre said Thursday the 20 allegations deal with incidents between 1995 and 2013.

Da Vinci’s Christ painting sells for record $450M

The painting, “Salvator Mundi,” Latin for “Savior of the World,” is one a few paintings by Leonardo known to exist

Loblaws closing 22 stores, launching home delivery ahead of ‘difficult year’

“We are excited about our future. But…we expect 2018 will be a difficult year,” said Galen G. Weston, Loblaw CEO.

Ban moves ahead in B.C. against same real estate agent for buyer and seller

New real estate consumer protection rules to take effect in March

Indigenous youth deaths preventable, B.C. coroner says

Trauma, mental illness, drugs and alcohol major factors

Walk of Fame bash celebrates David Suzuki, Donovan Bailey, Anna Paquin

Suzuki says he’ll be thinking of his late parents as he accepts the honour

Most Read