Ministers stop in Stettler as part of cabinet tour

  • Feb. 16, 2011 12:00 p.m.
Interacting with public – Ministers (left-right) Blackett

Interacting with public – Ministers (left-right) Blackett

By JULIE BERTRAND

Independent Reporter

A sizable contingent of the provincial government, nine ministers and one MLA stopped in Stettler on Wednesday, Feb. 9, the third day of the Cabinet 2011 Tour.

The delegation comprised Lindsay Blackett, Minister of Culture and Community Spirit, Ray Danyluk, Minister of Infrastructure, Gene Zwozdesky, Minister of Health and Wellness, Jack Hayden, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development and MLA for Drumheller-Stettler, Jonathan Denis, Minister of Housing and Urban Affairs, Len Weber, Minister for Aboriginal Relations, Alison Redford, Minister of Justice and Attorney General, Luke Ouellette, Minister of Transportation, Iris Evans, Minister of international and intergovernmental relations and Raymond Prins, MLA for Lacombe-Ponoka riding.

Cabinet members met with county and town representatives as well as constituents at the Stettler Rec Centre. Informal discussion was the order of the event.

Town and county councilors from Hanna, Oyen, Paintearth, Starland and Stettler mingled in the room with the ministers and the MLA.

“There were municipalities that represented the entire constituency,” said Shawna Benson, director of economic development and communications for the county of Stettler.

Jack Hayden introduced the ministers and the MLA and talked about the long day they had, which had started at 6 a.m.

He also reminisced about acting in plays with Malcolm Fischer, town councillor, who was present, before telling the audience that there would be no speech due to the time constraint.

Throughout the day, the ministers and MLAs visited Red Deer, Sylvan Lake, Innisfail, Olds, Sundre, Rocky Mountain House, Wetaskiwin, Camrose, Ponoka and Lacombe, finishing in Stettler before going back to Edmonton. The ministers and the MLA arrived at 4:45 p.m. and left at 6:30 p.m. The event ended at 7 p.m.

The cabinet tour, which comes at a time of considerable uncertainty and a leadership race within the governing Progressive Conservative Party will end on Feb. 17 in southern Alberta.

It is widely believed that the timing of the tour is arranged with a view to reflect an image of unity and strength within the party as the leadership contest gathers pace.

With the latest announcement that Doug Griffiths, the MLA for the Battle River Wainwright riding will be running for the party leadership, it has already become a three-way contest.