Notes from the MLA: Fighting for what’s fair for Alberta

Danielle Larivee
MLA for Lesser Slave Lake

Over the past week, I’ve been meeting with constituents throughout Lesser Slave Lake.

Wherever I go, people ask me about British Columbia. They want to know what Alberta is doing. And they want to know how that affects them.

Rachel Notley has been fighting for Alberta, both in public and at the negotiating table. She’s doing this because Albertans deserve the best—and fairest—return on our resources.

With B.C. threatening endless delays to Trans-Mountain’s construction, our entire caucus proudly passed Bill 12 in the Legislature, giving Alberta the power to restrict the export of natural gas, crude oil and refined fuels. The Premier is now fully prepared to turn off the taps of resources flowing to B.C. if the path to building that pipe is not cleared immediately.

It’s a drastic step, but it’s a crucial one for all Albertans. I’ve been telling people that wherever I go that I’m not willing to write off investment and jobs like our neighbours to the west. And our Premier isn’t either.

Having been the MLA for Lesser Slave Lake the past three years, I can look back to milestones for our region. This includes the new High Prairie hospital and Northern Lakes College investment, the runway and affordable child care in Slave Lake, the road from Faust to Triangle, a new courthouse for Red Earth Creek and massive renovation of Mistassiniy school.

Each one of these investments are crucial and will benefit our communities for years to come. But they would not be possible without the energy industry, which creates jobs, economic spinoffs and resources to invest in our communities. There is not a road, a hospital or a school in Alberta that doesn’t owe something to oil and gas.

That’s why the only outcome we’ll accept is that the Trans-Mountain Pipeline expansion gets built.

UCP leader Jason Kenney is more worried about being loud. Instead of backing us up, he’s talking Alberta’s chances down. And he can’t seem to keep his story straight. He said that Alberta should invest in the pipeline to make it happen, then has turned around and said the opposite. He even said that no pipeline project is a national priority.

He’s blaming Ottawa, trying to paper over the fact that he failed to get a pipeline to tidewater during his 20 years there. Instead, he bailed out the auto sector. During a crucial time for Alberta, why won’t he even consider the possibility that an Albertan project is as important?

Rachel has maintained razor-focus. The Trans Mountain expansion is our number one priority. Unlike the UCP, we aren’t grandstanding for media or flip-flopping on investing in making this happen. That’s why our government is the only one who can get this done.

Every step of the way, Rachel has taken a consistent and careful approach to make sure that we win this fight and get the right outcome for Albertans. And it’s her leadership that has pushed the federal government to move forward.

Ottawa is finally starting to take action, by getting tough with the B.C. government and proposing to backstop the pipeline – and it’s because Rachel has been a strong, unwavering advocate for Alberta and this project. She’s also helped convince a majority of Canadians that the pipeline is good for the entire country, including folks in B.C.

I am so proud to have a Premier who understands northern Alberta. Rachel will stick up for Albertans and our fair share. Because at the end of the day, this pipeline is what’s best for Alberta. We’re almost across the finish line, and we will get the job done.

That is why Rachel and your government will not give up until this pipeline is built. The stakes are too high for Canadians, for Albertans, and for the people of Lesser Slave Lake to let up now.

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