Alberta Speech from the Throne Focuses on Affordability and Health Care Reform

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Premier Danielle Smith’s government will focus on affordability, health care, job creation and retaliate against Ottawa, according to Tuesday’s Speech from the Throne.

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Lieutenant Governor Salma Lakhani delivered the address to the Legislature on Tuesday afternoon to mark the start of the fourth session of the 30th Legislature.

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Citing “strong headwinds,” the speech reiterated government priorities outlined by Government House Leader Joseph Schow a day earlier.

“Rising inflation is impacting the ability of Albertans to support themselves and their families; our health care system is under great pressure; and we are fighting the federal government’s unprecedented interference and overreach in Ottawa,” Lakhani said.

“We have already faced difficult challenges,” she said. « We will do it again. »

Former Premier Jason Kenney, representing Calgary-Lougheed, was not in the house at the time of the speech.

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His successor as head of government in the province, Premier Danielle Smith, was officially sworn in as a member of the Legislative Assembly about 90 minutes before the speech after having already been sworn in as head of government in mid- october.

Smith was officially sworn in as a Member of the Legislative Assembly about 90 minutes before the speech, having already been sworn in as Prime Minister in mid-October.


On affordability, the speech echoed the government’s previously announced commitment to increase electricity rebates, index personal income taxes to inflation and to suspend the provincial gasoline tax for at least another six months.

“Our natural resources are not government property. They are the property of the people of Alberta.

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Lakhani said other accessibility measures may soon follow, and also said he is making the current natural gas rebate program permanent.

“Every decision this government makes until this inflationary crisis is over will balance affordability for Albertans with protecting the financial well-being of our province.

Health care and job creation

On the health care file, the speech thanked medical workers for their efforts, promised an action plan for reform while warning that “solving our health problems will take time”.

The government’s plan calls for Alberta Health Services (AHS) to use more licensed facilities to improve surgery wait times, change rules around ambulance procedures and provide more mental health support for youth and children.

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“The government understands that a significant investment in mental health saves thousands of lives and improves the lives of hundreds of thousands more in our province.

As noted by Schow and Smith a day earlier, an overhaul of Alberta’s human rights law to protect unvaccinated people from COVID-19, originally promised by Smith, was not included in the speech.

The province’s job creation program focuses on the agriculture and energy sectors, promising more support and training.

“As Albertans, we will never be ashamed of feeding and feeding the world. In fact, now more than ever, the world needs more energy and more agriculture in Alberta.

“Stand up to Ottawa”

The speech ended with an overview of the government’s plan to settle the province’s relationship with the federal government.

This included Smith’s flagship policy proposal, the Alberta Sovereignty in a United Canada Act, which was to be introduced as Bill 1 immediately following the speech.

Lakhani concluded by reiterating the government’s commitment to Canada, but also the need for the voices of Alberta and Albertans to be heard and respected.

“Our nation and the world need Alberta to be a leader. And that is what the government will do.

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