‘I renew my pledge to work diligently’

At the outset of this news column, I want us all to think about the people of Lac-Mégantic, Que., after the tragic train derailment

At the outset of this news column, I want us all to think about the people of Lac-Mégantic, Que., after the tragic train derailment and explosion. Our hearts and prayers go out to them, after this shocking event. Like many people in our province affected by flooding, they will be recovering and rebuilding for a long time.

As your member of Parliament for Crowfoot, I have accepted the appointment by Prime Minister Stephen Harper to our Conservative government’s cabinet. I want everyone to know that I accepted this appointment on behalf of all of us in our Crowfoot riding. We have worked hard for many years and we speak with a strong political voice. I renew my pledge to continue to work diligently on behalf of all my constituents, and now, I pledge to do the best I can in service to our nation as a cabinet minister.

Our Conservative government will continue to focus on creating jobs, growth and long-term prosperity in all regions of the country.

We are delivering on our commitments. We have provided strong, stable government in a time of continuing economic uncertainty, kept taxes low, cut government spending, and put our finances on a sustainable path. We are committed to balancing the federal budget by 2015.

I am humbled by the great amount of trust and confidence that our prime minister has expressed for my work with this appointment. I am looking forward to fulfilling my new duties and working in my new leadership role with my colleagues in our Conservative national caucus.

As the minister of state for finance, I will be working closely with the Minister of Finance, the Hon. Jim Flaherty. Since the ceremony at Rideau Hall a week ago Monday, I have been working in my new office at the Department of Finance about four blocks south of Parliament Hill. I am being briefed by many departmental officials on many files.

In fact, I “hit the ground running” by meeting the finance ministers from all provinces and territories in a teleconference my first day on the job.

I will be the minister of finance’s voice in the House of Commons whenever the minister of finance himself is not in the House. I will be responding to the opposition parties during Question Period to finance-related questions. There are government bills to be “steered” through the hearing process in the chamber.

Occasionally, I will be dispatched to appear in place of Canada’s minister of finance.

My House of Commons office and my Crowfoot constituency office will operate as usual. I will continue to work from those offices as my “base.” Many constituents will remember that in my earlier years as our elected federal representative, I was in the Opposition “front benches” as critic for portfolios including: solicitor general; justice; public safety and emergency preparedness.

I am looking forward to this “higher profile” position where I will be “stating our case” and “setting the record straight” when it comes to our Conservative government’s actions to create jobs, grow our economy and prepare for Canada’s long-term prosperity.

Crowfoot MP Kevin Sorenson can be reached at 4945—50th Street, Camrose, AB, T4V 1P9, call 780-608-4600, toll-free 1-800-665-4358, fax 780-608-4603 or email Kevin.Sorenson.c1@parl.gc.ca .

— From the Hill

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