Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Strengthening Today, Securing Tomorrow

I thought the budget was a good, strong budget - and I'm not just saying that because I am a conservative. Of course I have heard criticisms from "some people" but I figure if the best they can come up with to complain about is that there is "increased funding to the horse racing industry" (which is actually rent for the VLT's on their premises and the VLT's themselves generate more revenue then the rent that is paid) then it must be a good budget!!!

How could anyone be upset with this budget? (*coff* Brian Mason *coff*) The original Globe and Mail online headline for the Budget was something like "Alberta Throws Money at Everything and Still has a 4 Billion Dollar Surplus."

I was impressed by a few noteworthy aspects of this budget - the first being the increased spending to Post Secondary Education (which is an issue of mine) - $2.2 billion budget for Advanced Education; a 19 percent increase over last year; $87 million in ongoing funding entrenched in the business plan to cover tuition increases for students every year; $45 million in funding from the Access to the Future Fund; capital support for facilities; funds for enrollment growth and increasing apprenticeship programs; increase in funding for scholarships, bursaries and grants (including rural incentive bursaries); and (among other things) a 6 percent increase in base operating grants.

The other thing I was happy to see was the creation of the Alberta Cancer Prevention Legacy Fund. I'd say that Cancer is another one of my issues, but really it is something that has touched most of us in one way or another. I recently read a statistic that said that of my generation, sixty percent will be diagnosed with Cancer atleast once in our lifetime. Obviously the impact of Cancer on our society is rising and I don't see why, here in Alberta with a strongly funded research and PSE system, that we can't find the cure for Cancer.

I think the strength of our economy here in Alberta is apparent in this budget - our successes, savings and funded capital projects are unmatched by anywhere else in this country - and I am pleased to see so much going into key savings funds and endowments (which I think is really a key to our future success). I am proud to be an Albertan. We really do live in the best (maybe not the prettiest, but the best) province in Canada!

Duncan and I really enjoyed the Hospitality of the Hon. Minister Dave Hancock at his reception following the Budget Speech. We were very pleased to be invited and Government House is a beautiful building with many neat places to explore (and photograph). Minister Hancock's speech was amazing - he spoke with a passion that fuelled my pride in Alberta even more.

More Government House pictures on Flickr.

1 comment:

Debris Trail said...

Thank you once again for signing onto the Canadian Heroes blogroll.

Completely Off Topic:

When and if you write posts that relate to military matters at all, email me the URL and I'll get it up on Canadian Heroes. I'll link to your blog, and paste in a short sample of the post.

email me at:

Debris Trail