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O’Toole vows to change fiscal stabilization program during Calgary stop

The Tories also vowed to help the Alberta energy sector by lifting the tanker ban on the B.C. coast, making changes to environmental impact assessments, and establishing a national LNG export strategy.

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Conservative leader Erin O’Toole says if elected prime minister he would change the fiscal stabilization program, which would benefit Alberta to the tune of $4 billion.

O’Toole made the announcement in Calgary Thursday. He is scheduled to visit the Stampede before jetting to BC. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was in Calgary Wednesday.

“Even as Alberta’s economy suffered with massive reductions in resource revenues, Albertans continued to pay more than their fair share to support the rest of the country,” O’Toole said.

“That’s why a Conservative government will fix the Fiscal Stabilization Program as a first step to ensuring that Western Canadians are treated equally in our confederation.”

The Conservative plan includes:

  • Removing the per person payout cap, which was recently raised from $60 to $170. 
  • Lowering the threshold for payouts from a 5% decline in revenue to a 3% decline. 
  • Lowering the threshold for a payout from a drop in resource revenue from the current 50 % to 40%. 
  • Making all the changes retroactive to 2015.

O’Toole said will give Alberta a rebate of $4 billion with the rest split between other provinces.

“Today our country is facing a national unity crisis,” O’Toole said.

“A crisis fuelled by Justin Trudeau and his government’s disregard for Western Canadians here in Alberta.”

Calgary Nose Hill Tory MP Michelle Rempel-Garner said Albertans have long been treated unfairly by Ottawa.

“This announcement means that a Conservative government would fix the federal government’s unfair Fiscal Stabilization Program, which in its current form has fallen short on supporting Albertans in a meaningful way, said Rempel-Garner.

“The retroactive changes will flow through our Equalization Rebate, with $4 billion going back to Alberta. Under this plan, Alberta will receive the equalization rebate we deserve. This means that our province can start getting the support it needs, and that Trudeau has not delivered.

“Today’s announcement also shows what happens when individual Members of Parliament are bold, unafraid to suggest new ideas, and vigorously fight for change. I have refused, and will continue to refuse, to back down on getting equality for my province. I penned the Buffalo Declaration a little over a year ago, and today’s announcement by Erin O’Toole has turned one of its recommendations into official federal Conservative Party policy.”

The intent of the fiscal stabilization program was to help provincial finances when there is a sudden drop in revenue. 

The Tories also vowed to help the Alberta energy sector by lifting the tanker ban on the B.C. coast, making changes to environmental impact assessments, and establishing a national LNG export strategy. 

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard
dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com
Twitter.com/nobby7694

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard and the Vice-President: News Division of Western Standard New Media Corp. He has served as the City Editor of the Calgary Sun and has covered Alberta news for nearly 40 years. dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com

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11 Comments

11 Comments

  1. Baron Not Baron

    July 9, 2021 at 1:56 pm

    Oh Tool !

  2. Bryan

    July 9, 2021 at 8:03 am

    Sorry mister ‘of the Tool’. I believe you about as much as I believe Justin(e) True-dope. We need term limits in Alberta and Kanadahar (Canada).

    Ceterum autem censeo Justinius True-dope-us esse delendam

  3. Dave Symington

    July 9, 2021 at 7:43 am

    O’tool Take Kenny and your bag promises and get out of Alberta! We need real change and not NDP ether.

  4. Kelly Carter

    July 8, 2021 at 11:13 pm

    And he promised to not implement a carbon tax either. That lasted maybe a month. Sorry, don’t believe you O’Toole. Maverick party for me!

  5. Baron Not Baron

    July 8, 2021 at 7:31 pm

    Here:

    W I L D R OS E I N E D E P E N D E N C E P A R T Y !!!!

  6. John Lankers

    July 8, 2021 at 5:47 pm

    1. O’Toole will never become PM.
    2. This article in MacLean’s is a good read
    ⬇️⬇️⬇️
    https://www.macleans.ca/opinion/the-rise-of-the-republic-of-the-northwest/
    WIPA all the way!

  7. K

    July 8, 2021 at 5:46 pm

    Angry baby with a girl’s name.

  8. Seven-Zero-One

    July 8, 2021 at 4:59 pm

    We will give 4 billion. We will take 16 billion from Alberta. They need to milk Alberta to keep social peace. Even Harper build 0 Zero pipelines.E toole can’t even build fence!
    Wildrose independence full steam.

  9. Rose

    July 8, 2021 at 4:54 pm

    Once Bitten, Twice Shy!
    We’re not going to fall for his BS lies again.

  10. Andrew

    July 8, 2021 at 4:42 pm

    Wildrose Independence Party of Alberta. Kenney and Otoole can piss off.

  11. Steven

    July 8, 2021 at 4:39 pm

    What??? Erin O’Toole is looking west again?

    Erin is now closing the barn door after many of the Albertan CPC conservative base have moved on to the Maverick Party. Erin O’Toole should have kept his eye on Alberta, but O’Toole was so focused on Quebec he couldn’t or didn’t care what was going on in Premier Kenney’s back yard. That being the UCP popularity free falling while the Wildrose Independence Party of Alberta (WIPA) was gaining, last time I checked now at 20% in the polls.

    I say go to hell Erin. You kissed Quebec’s ass now Albertan will kick your ass in the next election for the betrayal.

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News

War room launches American offensive

The approximately $240,000 initiative is “a reminder to Americans that their friends and allies in Canada hold solutions to cleaner energy and lower gas prices – and the key to a strong post-pandemic economic recovery.”

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Alberta’s energy war room kicked of a quarter-million-dollar campaign to sell Americans on Canada’s oil.

As first reported in the Western Standard, the campaign kicked off with billboards in Times Square in New York City and Washinton, DC.

The campaign by the Canadian Energy Centre asks Americans to choose Canadian oil imports first for solutions to cleaner energy production and a break from rising prices at the pumps.

The US uses approximately nine million barrels of oil per day beyond what is produced domestically. 

The approximately $240,000 initiative is “a reminder to Americans that their friends and allies in Canada hold solutions to cleaner energy and lower gas prices — and the key to a strong post-pandemic economic recovery.”

The outdoor and online campaign will direct people to information about Canada’s responsible energy development at www.friendlyenergy.com

The campaign will also feature a grassroots component that calls on Canadians and Americans to respectfully advocate to the president and U.S. lawmakers about the benefits of Canadian energy.

“We want to give our American friends the information they need to urge their leaders to look to safe, responsible and increasingly less intensive crude from Canada that U.S. refiners need and that will help keep gas prices down,” said Canadian Energy Centre CEO Tom Olsen.

“We are speaking out for the many Canadians and Americans dismayed that the U.S. government asked OPEC+ countries for more oil to curb rising gas prices, rather than working with Canada.”

Olsen pointed out the U.S. government closed the door on the Keystone XL pipeline, which would have been the first pipeline operated at net-zero emissions and eventually powered by renewable energy resources.

“While Keystone XL’s fate has been decided for now, there remains urgency in letting Americans know any further threatened sanctions in the U.S. on pipelines by state governments and activist-led court challenges will be detrimental to American families, struggling to get back on their feet from the economic impacts of COVID-19,” he said.

Of the top 10 countries from which the U.S. imported oil in June 2021, three were designated Not Free (Russia, Saudi Arabia and Iraq) and three were designated as Partly Free (Mexico, Nigeria and Colombia).

Specifics for the billboard advertising include:

  • Two digital billboards in Times Square for a four-week period and online display campaign promoting Canada as the responsible and reliable energy provider for the U.S.
  • A static digital billboard, located in Astor on New York’s Grand Central Parkway, for a two-week period targeting traffic heading to LaGuardia Airport, the Mets Citi Field Stadium and a “chokepoint” for traffic to Queens.
  • Three full-motion digital billboards for a two-week period on the exterior of the Capital One Arena in Washington, D.C., home of the NBA’s Washington Wizards, the NHL’s Washington Capitals and the NCAA’s Georgetown Hoyas.
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News

Farkas pledges to freeze taxes for four years

Farkas said every year Calgarians are told they have to accept increased taxes or face cuts to services.

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Calgary mayoral candidate Jeromy Farkas released the first plank of his platform Monday, pledging to freeze taxes for four years.

“Over the past 10 years, Calgarians have struggled with lack of opportunity. We’ve witnessed the economy crumble, the tax burden increase, and the city hall establishment become increasingly out of touch. It’s time for that to change,” said Farkas in a release.

“If elected as mayor, I will champion a four-year property tax freeze for homes and businesses. Now more than ever, Calgarians need a strong and growing economy. This four-year tax freeze will throw a lifeline to struggling families, seniors, and small business owners, and give them the certainty that they need to get back on their feet.”

Farkas said economist Jack Mintz reviewed the promise and found it to be an achievable goal, with the millions the city has stashed aside in various reserve funds.

“Implementing a four-year residential and non-residential tax freeze is undoubtedly achievable,” said Mintz,

“The best part is this plan can be implemented without reductions to city services given the excess reserves available and reasonable growth forecasts.”

Farkas said every year Calgarians are told they have to accept increased taxes or face cuts to services.

“It’s time to put this false choice to rest with common-sense financial management,” said the Farkas campaign, adding the tax bill for the typical home has doubled over the last decade while basic city services have remained stagnant or even declined.

“This election is about change versus more of the same. As councillor, I’ve consistently opposed needless budget increases. I have a record of following through on my promises. Change starts now, with a four-year tax freeze,” Farkas said.

Calgarians go to the polls October 18.

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News

Poll shows Canadians trust the Internet and know what’s fake news

Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault’s department has proposed “concrete action” to police news and information on the internet.

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Despite Liberal attempts to censor the Internet, the vast majority of Canadians think online information is reliable and people can tell when its not, says the feds own internal polling.

Blacklock’s Reporter said Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault’s department has proposed “concrete action” to police news and information on the Internet.

“A majority, 80%, believe the online content they consume is factual and truthful,” said a pollsters’ report.

“Two-thirds of Canadians, 66%, feel confident in their ability to tell if online content is fair and balanced.”

The Heritage department paid Ipsos Public Affairs $164,621 to conduct online focus groups and questionnaires with 5,207 people.

“Almost all Canadians are frequently consuming some form of information online,” wrote researchers.

“Canadians largely believe having access to different sources of information with different points of view is important for people to participate in a democracy.

“Most participants were confident in their abilities to consider various sources and ensure they are being presented with ‘the full picture.’”

Guilbeault last July 2 issued a report to instruct the media on how to report the news.

“We can no longer ignore the challenges and opportunities that come with an increasingly digital world,” said Guilbeault.

“We have to act now to ensure a healthy ecosystem online for all citizens.”

Reporters, editors and commentators must “foster greater exposure to diverse cultural content, information and news” and “contribute to a healthier public discourse, greater social inclusion within society, bolster resilience to disinformation and misinformation and increase our citizens’ ability to participate in democratic processes,” said the report.

The guide defined misinformation as “false or misleading content shared without harmful intent though the effects can still be harmful, e.g. when people share false information with friends and family in good faith.”

The document doesn’t say who within the Heritage department would monitor news deemed to be harmful.

“Ethical journalistic standards should be upheld and encouraged,” said the guide, adding: “Information about media ownership and funding sources should be made accessible to the public and transparent to safeguard a diverse and pluralistic media ecosystem.”

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