Posted on Mar 2, 2017
This March will mark the legislature’s longest scheduled sitting since 2009, and I am excited by our continued efforts to focus on the needs of Albertans. Budget 2017 will be debated this session, and it couldn’t have been prepared without your help. Thank you to every one of you who completed the online budget survey that was created with the help of Generation Forum and sought to engage those under 35. Many had great ideas such as mental health initiatives, reconciliation with First Nations people, and building energy efficiency into our infrastructure that I shared with Finance Minister Joe Ceci.
I will also be working with those in the disability community and self-advocates about the possibility of introducing Henson Trust legislation here in Alberta. Originally established in Ontario in the 1980s, the Henson Trust ensures that persons with disabilities, who inherit assets like a family home, cannot have their government benefits terminated. Alberta is the only province in Canada that does not protect persons with disabilities from losing their disability benefits should they inherit assets. If you or anyone you know has been impacted by this, please contact my office.
In January, your government also unveiled new energy efficiency programs for your business, non-profit, or home. If you want to learn more about how to install Solar on Your Home, the Solar Energy Society of Alberta is hosting a FREE workshop on Tuesday, March 28 from 7 to 9PM at SAIT. Having changed legislation in 2016, the time has now arrived for sunny Alberta to harness another of its energy resources.
Significant improvements to four social and seniors housing units in Calgary Currie are set to begin following an investment of $18 million in joint funding from the Governments of Canada and Alberta. This year will see repairs and renovations at Bankview House, Horizon Housing Society, Shalem Manor, and St. Marks Manor, ensuring that seniors and low-income families and individuals have safe and efficient places to call home.
2017 is also the year that Canada celebrates its 150 Birthday. Non-profit community groups in Alberta are eligible for $2 million in grant funding to commemorate the anniversary of Confederation. Non-profit organizations may apply for up to $25,000 through the Community Initiatives Program to support community-based projects. Applications are accepted with a deadline of the fifteenth of each month. The final deadline for applications is Oct. 15, 2017.
While I will spend much of March in Edmonton at the Legislature, I will be back in our riding every weekend attending events and meeting with you on your doorsteps. If you have any additional questions, concerns, or would like me to attend an event in your community please do not hesitate to contact my office. While there will be a Constituency Week from March 27 to March 31, I always keep Fridays open for appointments and caffeine.