Report from the Legislature – March 27, 2013

Everyone has a role to play when it comes to potential flooding this spring, and that includes our government.   To that end, Premier Brad Wall has appointed a special cabinet committee to oversee the province’s preparations and response to potential spring flooding.  In addition, we have designated $182 million in the Growth and Financial Security Fund to cover potential costs.   Several ministries have already committed resources to flood preparation.   For example, Ministry of Government Relations and the Water Security Agency have been holding meetings in at-risk regions.   At those meetings, they are providing information and advice on what to do to prevent and respond to flooding.   Water levels at the Rafferty and Alameda reservoirs continue to be lowered.   And the Ministry of Highways is taking stock to ensure there are enough road building materials, culverts and bridge replacement components and machinery, culvert steamers and trailers filled with all the necessary equipment.   Municipalities that need help can contact the Ministry of Government Relations to get flood supplies, equipment and assistance.   Emergency supplies and equipment available include:

  • Sandbags;
  • Sandbag machines;
  • Pumps;
  • Hoses; and
  • Barrier systems.

Information on how to keep you and your family safe, in addition to local contacts and information about flood preparedness, is available on-line at

On March 20, 2013, our government announced its sixth consecutive balanced budget.   Overall, reaction to the “Balanced Growth” 2013-14 budget has been positive.  From praise for being the only balanced budget in Canada to kudos from municipalities on revenue sharing and the sincere thanks from the group that was the driving force behind the province’s first transition home in 25 years, our government is humbled and honoured that this year’s budget reflects the priorities of Saskatchewan people.   Through controlled spending that improves quality of life, invests in infrastructure and supports our growing economy, we will keep the Saskatchewan Advantage.

Not surprisingly, one of the groups that just doesn’t seem to get it is the Official Opposition.   This year’s budget introduces a new uranium royalty structure that will attract new investment in mines and increase jobs for First Nations in the north.   But the NDP refuse to say whether they support this important initiative.  New opposition leader Cam Broten was asked several times whether he supports these changes and the new opportunities they create, but he refused to take a position.   Northern leaders, though, know where they stand.   The Mayor of Pinehouse supports the changes to the uranium royalty structure.   The CEO of the Athabasca Basin Authority says the changes will lead to new mines and expansions.   And the owner of Northern Resource Trucking, which is 70 per cent aboriginal owned, said the changes are just what his industry needs.   They mean more jobs, more training and infrastructure – what the north needs.   The only person that doesn’t seem to get that is the NDP’s new leader.­­­