Premier Kenny trying to right the sinking Alberta ship

To the Editor;

A correspondent to the Capital recently questioned why I don’t cover the shortcomings of Premier Kenny and the UCP.

I don’t because I thought that was his area of expertise as he frequently lists the errors, real or imagined of the present AB government. I admire Premier Kenny because he left the Federal government where he could have become leader of the Conservative Party and probably PM, to return to AB to rescue us from the NDP. He faced the daunting task of running for the leadership of the PC party telling them in advance if he won he was going to disband the party and form a new one, encouraging Wild Rose supporters to merge. With tireless work he succeeded against the protests of the old guard of progressive (leftist) pseudo conservatives. With that achieved he set out to defeat the scourge of the NDP and despite their fear mongering and union support, he soundly defeated them.

Now that he is doing what he said he would, the NDP and unions, particularly nurses and teachers are hysterically protesting “draconian” cuts. The proposed 2.8% budget cut is hardly draconian when you consider that AB spends more on public services than any other province. The Calgary Board of Education tried to bluff the Premier saying that they would lay-off over 300 teachers, the UCP called their bluff and they backed down. The UCP plan is to reduce people through attrition, but there will be layoffs, certainly not the thousands claimed. The hard choice is to do it now, not later when the interest on the debt forces real serious cuts. Health and Education account for well over 50% of Alberta’s budget.

The public service has been living in wonderland since the Stelmach, Redford and Notley era, the time of reckoning has arrived. Every week I hear from people in the private sector whose hours have been cut, their wages have been cut or their jobs have been cut. This cascades down the economy creating a less than positive attitude which feeds on itself. I recently heard of a trucking company which had to take a 30% rollback in rates, that affects subcontractors and their employees. This combined with the Trudeau Carbon Tax means that a lot of people in the free enterprise system are asking “why do we bother.”

Many companies and people have already left Canada, particularly AB because of the unfriendly business climate, many more would leave if they could sell their home or business. Those who advocate a sales tax or higher corporate taxes obviously do not study economics.

Our son lives in the Princeton, New Jersey area, his taxes on a modest house are over $14,000 US. The wealthy there are leaving in droves to a more friendly climate leaving the remainder to pick up the free spending government’s tab.

Premier Kenny, in spite of his perceived faults, is at least trying to right the sinking Alberta ship. PM Trudeau keeps sending more torpedos.

Gord Snell

Three Hills, AB

PS: Private schools do not cost the taxpayer money, they save the taxpayer money as they receive less funding from the government than do public schools. If your neighbour sends their child to a private school thank them for their sacrifice.