Report from the Legislature – October 16, 2013

Giving Thanks For A Good Crop

Many used the recent Thanksgiving holiday as a time to gather and reflect on the many things for which we are thankful.  In this province, there is plenty and a bountiful harvest is one such example.  Despite a late spring and lots of moisture, the majority of Saskatchewan farmers are now finished in the field and, in most cases, are reporting a great growing season.  Statistics Canada has estimated this year’s crop is one of the biggest ever while producers suggest the 2013 crop exceeded expectations with average to above-average yields.  Accounting for over one-third of the province’s total exports, agriculture continues to be an integral part of our economy that works not only to feed us, but others around the world.

Full-Time Jobs Hit New Heights In September

Saskatchewan’s economy is diversifying, and is a national leader in growth, attracting newcomers and investment.  Statistics  Canada recently released further data supporting that.  Over the past year, more than 80 per cent of the new jobs created in Saskatchewan were full-time positions and, in total, there were a record 555,500 people working in September.  At 4.3 per cent, Saskatchewan also managed to maintain the lowest unemployment rate in Canada for the ninth consecutive month.  With more jobs, more people and more economic activity, working people in Saskatchewan now have more stability, security and a better quality of life than ever before.

Investing In Trades & Technology

Growth – and the new revenue it generates – gives our government the ability to meet the challenges that come with it.  One such area is trades and technology.  As our economy grows, so too does the need for skilled workers.  To that end, our government recently announced $10 million in support of the new Trades and Technology Centre in Yorkton.  This institution will not only increase the number of graduates in many highly-skilled areas that are in demand but will also make it possible for Yorkton-area students to learn closer to home.  Our government is also matching a $150,000 scholarship donation by the Yorkton Tribal Council to help provide local First Nations youth with scholarship dollars over the next five years.  One of our priorities is to help find new opportunities and to remove barriers to our Aboriginal young people so they can receive post-secondary training and education.

Fall Sitting Starting Soon

After catching up with constituents and attending many exciting events around the province, your Saskatchewan Party MLAs are about to return to the provincial legislature for the Fall Sitting of the Saskatchewan Legislative Assembly.  Overall, in terms of priorities, we’re hearing that you’re pleased with the direction the province is taking but also that there is more work to be done as it relates to highways and seniors care.  Through consultation, we have also heard that we need to maintain economic strength and the growth of our province in order to invest in the services that you need and deserve.  Keeping with Saskatchewan’s Plan for Growth, your input has helped us to chart our government’s course for the upcoming legislative session and beyond.  Together, we can use the benefits of growth to improve the quality of life for everyone in our province.