By Letter to the Editor on March 1, 2019.
With the up-coming provincial election, Albertans have a unique opportunity to help push forward what I think a lot of taxpayers in Alberta are concerned about: federal equalization payments.
The Canadian Taxpayers Federation sent out a message encouraging all Albertans to write/email all the leaders of the political parties in Alberta. The message/request is to have a referendum question on the provincial election ballot asking: Should the Alberta government challenge the federal equalization payments under the Canadian Constitution? I am not suggesting that this is the actual wording of the question, but you get the drift. Below is the verbiage I am using and will be sending it to all the leaders, my MLAs and local contestants in my riding. This referendum would not have to be binding, but if for example 80 per cent said yes, it would be a powerful tool to negotiate a better deal.
To the leaders of Alberta’s political parties:
I would ask you to seriously consider including a referendum question as part of this year’s provincial election ballot. I believe that most Albertans are concerned regarding the present mechanism on how federal equalization payments are calculated and adversely affects Alberta. To that point you should include a question to voters in Alberta: only a suggestion but you get the idea. “Should the Government of Alberta challenge the federal equalization payment program under the Canadian Constitution.” Yes or no. I believe whichever party forms the next government, this would be valuable information for the governing party. The time is right and would save money by including it in the existing process.
Here is the contact information for all the leaders:
– Rachel Notley, premier and leader of the NDP – firstname.lastname@example.org
– Jason Kenney, leader of the UCP – email@example.com
– Derek Fildebrandt, leader of the Freedom Conservative Party – firstname.lastname@example.org
– Stephen Mandel, leader of the Alberta Party – email@example.com
– David Kahn, leader of Alberta Liberal Party – firstname.lastname@example.org
– Marilyn Burns – leader of the Alberta Advantage Party – email@example.com
If you would like to better understand the history of how and why the federal equalization payments came about and, in my humble opinion, how truly unfair, this is to Alberta, check this out: http://www.c2cjournal.ca/author/ted-morton/.
I have already sent out my 12 messages to the appropriate Leaders and MLAs. I hope you do the same. Let’s make a difference for Alberta.