MLA report

MLA Ron Orr submission to Ponoka News for March 2.

By Lacombe-Ponoka MLA Ron Orr

Jack Welch, former CEO of General Electric, once said, “An organization’s ability to translate learning into action rapidly is the ultimate competitive advantage.”

Under the leadership of Mr. Welch, General Electric was one of the world’s best-known companies, renowned for its success through competitive innovation.

Alberta, incidentally, once had a similar reputation. Now, it seems government is more aptly defined by an inability to adapt. The Notley administration remains fixated on an obsolete agenda created long before the recession.

Despite job losses not seen since the 1980s, the NDP remains focused on increasing taxes, increasing regulation, and increasing the size of government. Meanwhile, Albertans are coming to the realization that it’s time to translate learning into action.

Last week, Wildrose Leader Brian Jean took matters into his own hands, and booked a number of events across Ontario to promote Alberta’s economy and energy sector. Speaking to a variety of prestigious groups, including the C.D. Howe Institute, he focused his efforts on addressing misinformation about Alberta’s natural resources and our province’s record when it comes to responsible energy development. During these difficult economic times, leadership matters.

At the same time, our official opposition has created an Equalization Fairness Panel. Albertans have significant concerns regarding how Alberta tax dollars are treated by the federal government. Billions of tax dollars collected in our province are redistributed across Canada each year. The current equalization agreement expires in 2019, and we believe it is important that Alberta’s concerns are addressed prior to the upcoming round of negotiations. The panel, including four fiscal experts from across Canada. You can sign up for updates at fairequalization.ca.

As our official opposition steps up to speak for Alberta on the national stage, we continue to meet today’s challenges here at home. Last year’s 272 fentanyl overdose deaths is indicative of an alarming and emergent public health crisis. To address this issue, we have recommended 10 common sense solutions to combat the fentanyl crisis. The government has partially adopted our action plan, and increased access to overdose kits in pharmacies across the province.

Typically, the official opposition’s role in our parliamentary democracy is to question governments and hold them to account. However, when the government abdicates its responsibilities, the duty to take action falls to the opposition.

This is a duty our official opposition is proud to accept.

I have found this last month being about the riding very productive. The government delay of session by a month has made this possible. I have been meeting constituents answering concerns and providing assistance.

I was present at the 2019 Canada Games Red Deer Announcement, hosted a media open house, hosted a meeting with Reeves and Mayors, attended Central Alberta Teachers Convention Event, Alberta Beef Conference Reception, Alberta Fish & Game AGM.

In my role as the Shadow Minister of Culture and Tourism, I have met with Sport Alberta, been to Chinese New Year, Indo-Canadian Republic Day, Ogaden Somali Community of Alberta Residents Justice Forum and the Rural Tourism Conference recently held in Camrose.

In recent weeks, the official opposition has been at work in Legislative committees seeking answers to government spending, misspending and over spending.

We have been speaking out clearly about directions and recommendations regarding Mental Health, Dental Care fees, Midwives, Freedom of the Press, Energy Policy and a host of other issues relevant to your life.

Starting March 8 we will begin the Spring Session of the Legislature. Enjoy the early spring weather for me.

I can be reached at my constituency office at 101, 4892 46 Street, Lacombe, AB, by telephone 403-782-7725 or by e-mail Lacombe.ponoka@assembly.ab.ca.

 

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