January 22nd, 2021

Lobbying on City’s behalf is MLA’s job

By Letter to the Editor on January 23, 2020.

I read Tim Kalinowski’s article in The Herald on Jan. 17 with utter dismay, sadness and yes, some anger. I felt these things because the City should not have to hire a lobbyist to lobby the provincial government on behalf of our city. I am not upset with the City that they feel they should have to do this; they just shouldn’t be in this position. We have a government member, Nathan Neudorf, the MLA for Lethbridge-East and that is his job!

I can speak to this from personal experience. For the previous four years, this is what I did, along with my colleague, Shannon Phillips, MLA for Lethbridge-West. When Shannon couldn’t be at one of those meetings because of her ministerial duties, I took those meetings and shared that information with her. We met with the mayor and council on a fairly regular basis to discuss the needs of the city, its strategic plans and any unforeseen issues that required provincial support such as the rerouting of the irrigation canals for the Sherring Industrial Park.

I lobbied our caucus for support of those things; I lobbied individual ministries and Premier Notley. Shannon lobbied Cabinet and Premier Notley. I met with constituents and many, many groups in our city about their issues. Some of those issues required both the City and the province to work together to resolve them. We worked on them together. I met with our mayor and other mayors and reeves from across southern Alberta almost every month to discuss issues that affected Lethbridge and other municipalities.

All of those issues which were discussed were brought to the identified ministries as needed and assistance was provided whenever possible. That is the job as a government MLA, to represent and advocate for their constituency. During the previous four years the City did not need to hire a lobbyist to do that job; I did it because that was what I was elected to do!

I ask MLA Neudorf to do his job to represent and advocate for this city and its constituents. The City should not be forced to hire someone else to lobby on our behalf (paid for through our municipal taxes); that is your job, MLA Neudorf – do your job!

Maria Fitzpatrick


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George McCrea

They weren’t forced. It had been up for discussion for a long time.

Reel in your rhetoric. Maybe Shannon could lobby
The odd thing as well. Would be nice to see Her
represent more than the 255 people
Who got her elected.

Tris Pargeter

Like the UCP does you mean. So why do I keep reading complaints of NO consultation whatsoever?

Seth Anthony

Of all the comments I’ve seen on the matter from Fitzpatrick and Philips over the last 3 years, not once did I see either mention addict crime. I’ve found it to be a standard MO of scs supporters to ignore the victimization of innocent people that their position enhances.

Fitzpatrick and Philips were main players in this ill conceived, virtue signaling experiment, and now Fitzpatrick has the tenacity and arrogance to tell Neudorf to “do his job” in alleviating a problem which she helped create.

Tris Pargeter

Well that is one superficial, nasty, and unfair assessment if I ever heard one Seth, and another example of why you present as a conservative.

George McCrea

Hey Seth. Interesting that on the mayors diatribe the herald has shut off the comments


Comments open ,under local news, Jan. 22’s article : SCS changes could bring more problems:mayor.
More complete copy of letter that phlushie references below, is there.

Wonder if the city wishes they would have hired a lobbyist 4-5 years ago? At least that way the city may have had more control over what exactly was being lobbied for? Were the two MLAs ,at the time alittle too heavy on the “father knows best” attitude? How much control did our city council have and take at the time? Or were they willing to let “father” take care of it?


You mean,Seth that some officials are trying to rewrite history?

George McCrea

Yes. According to Speaman they have been lobbying
For five years for additional funding. The arrogance of Fitzpatrick
She should have done her job. As for Phillips she was elected by
A margin of give or take 255. Using an NDP line
10000 DIDNT vote for her. Time she took notice and gave
some representation to those voters.

Southern Albertan

Why are we seeing increasing problems with drug abuse, crime, homelessness, ill health……? The reason is, poverty. Poverty, crime, drug abuse, homelessness, unemployment….are all cozy bedfellows.
Perhaps, we all, need to lobby to do what it takes to fix, poverty. One suggestion is “equal wealth distribution.” Countries who do this definitely have less poverty, crime, drug abuse, etc. Is this what we would want?
A suggestion is to go to Google and type in something like,” the relationship with unequal wealth distribution and poverty.”

Tris Pargeter

You guys all carve out little segments of what is a very complex picture, and persist with them, no matter what new information comes your way. Another conservative trait, and blaming takes precedence always.
I have absolutely no doubt in my mind that when it is information coming your way from women, even when they’re bloody well the ones working with these people, for months, day in and day out, you relegate it automatically as not being in the real world that YOU live in. As you will this comment….
Nathan Neudorf asks for everyone’s patience, that Jason Kenney, in typical conservative parlance, “has been very clear about this from the very beginning;” (omniscient small god that he is) and in the March budget we are to imagine that the UCP will focus on investing in “treatment” instead of just managing the addiction problem. We shall see, but some kind of tokenism seems far more likely because after all, we’re talking about money being invested in people who aren’t in the oil and gas industry. And if teachers and nurses didn’t make the cut….