Updates

NEB Modernization Fails Calgary and Risks Energy Jobs

NEB_Report.PNG

For Immediate Release

May 18, 2017

Calgary, AB – Today, Tom Kmiec, Member of Parliament for Calgary Shepard, affirmed that many of the proposed reforms in a report from a Liberal-appointed panel tasked to modernize the National Energy Board (NEB) fail Calgary and energy workers across Canada. The report recommends that the NEB be replaced with two new agencies and its leadership moved from Calgary to Ottawa.

“It's clear that the NEB modernization report is about punishing Calgary for being Canada's energy capital with the know-how and expertise to maximize the NEB's effectiveness” stated M.P. Kmiec.

The proposed move and the panel’s view that the regulator needs a stronger connection to the federal government, hints at an Ottawa power grab and greater centralization by the Liberal government. The decision would reverse the previous move of the NEB from Ottawa to Calgary in 1992 at which time was seen as a good decision to keep it away from policy makers and proximal to the industry it oversees.

“This report is more Ottawa knows best nonsense. Moving NEB board members to Ottawa puts them closer to politicians and lobbyists. That's the wrong message to be sending industry” says M.P. Kmiec.

The report also proposes a two-step review process for major energy projects that would extend the review time from 15 months to three years. No amount of new red tape will ever satisfy opponents of energy infrastructure, regardless of how long the approval timeline is. 

“The Liberals’ NEB modernization is causing unacceptable process uncertainty and delays in Alberta, putting at risk thousands of high paying middle-class energy jobs. This regulatory uncertainty is building Canada’s reputation as a place not to do business and invest, and could have a major impact on the Canadian economy” said M.P. Kmiec.

The panel also held no engagement sessions in Calgary, the city that would be most impacted by the panel’s recommendations and proves yet again that Calgary always comes out short with the Liberals in Ottawa.

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For more information, please contact:

Connor Staus

Constituency Assistant

Office of Tom Kmiec, M.P. for Calgary Shepard

Tom.Kmiec.C1@parl.gc.ca

Office: 403-974-1285

Cell: 403-462-7871

Calgary leaders express frustration at reduction of the Green Line LRT route

 

Green_Line_Cart.jpg

 

Calgary, AB: Today, MP Michelle Rempel (Calgary Nose Hill), MP Tom Kmiec (Calgary Shepard), City Councilor Sean Chu (Ward 4) and community leaders expressed frustration at the recently announced changes to Calgary’s Light Rapid Transit Green Line.

They were reacting to reports that the Green Line that would be roughly half the length of the original route for an even bigger price tag, effectively excluding a wide swath of suburban communities.

“I think a lot of taxpayers will be asking themselves how this happened,” said Rempel. “Two years ago, I stood with City Councilors in front of a map to announce an LRT project that would stretch from the northernmost reaches of Calgary to its southeastern most point. That is not what is being proposed today. I suspect many suburban Calgarians who are desperate for access to the LRT are going to be asking some pretty tough questions about why they should accept such a massive reduction in scope while the price tag for this project has ballooned. Further, all of this has happened before a shovel has even hit the ground.”

MP Tom Kmiec also voiced concerns on behalf of his community. “People in my riding are not happy. A lot of people who recently purchased homes in my community were told the Green Line would service them by 2024. Under this plan, they were sold a bill of goods. The funding announcement by our former federal government was supposed to ease the transit crisis in my riding. Everyone should be asking, how did this happen?”

City Councilor Sean Chu also expressed his frustration. “I found out about this reduction in scope from media reports on Thursday. This is a huge change from the original plan, and many communities in my Ward are going to be negatively impacted. There has been no consultation with Council on this change. This is blatant mismanagement, and taxpayers should be outraged that they’re being asked to smile and pick up the tab for it. It would be irresponsible for Council to vote for another cent of taxpayer dollars to be spent on this project until we find out how and why this happened. Frankly, this is ridiculous.”

David Hartwick, a spokesperson for the Northern Hills Community Association, expressed outrage on behalf of residents in his area. “Centre Street cannot accommodate any more busses in the north, and new developments are about to add tens of thousands of new residents to the transit crisis we face. Southeastern suburbs are facing the same challenge.  This announcement is just another example of the severely broken system we had to challenge during the Harvest Hills Golf Course redevelopment application. For anyone to say that suburban residents wouldn’t be concerned with this shows just how out of touch some officials have become to suburban needs. All Calgarians should be outraged.”

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For more information, please contact:

Dustin Franks, Office of Sean Chu

Caward4@calgary.ca

403-268-3734

 

Sean Schnell, Office of Michelle Rempel

Michelle.rempel.c1@parl.gc.ca

403-216-7777

 

Connor Staus, Office of Tom Kmiec

Tom.kmiec.c1@parl.gc.ca

403-974-1285

Yiddish proverbs anyone?

The International Yiddish festival was in Tel Aviv this month. In honour of that, here’s a compilation of a couple of my favourite Yiddish proverbs.

Liberal government response to organ donation e-petition

The government has posted their official response to organ donation e-petition 642. A huge thanks to Shauna Rivait, the initiator of the petition, and the thousands of you who took the time to sign the petition and urge the government to support this life-saving legislation!

 

Following is their response:

"The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) extends its thanks to the petitioners for expressing their views with respect to organ and tissue donation.

Bill C-316 is a Private Members’ bill which seeks to amend the Canada Revenue Agency Act to authorize the CRA to enter into an agreement with a province or a territory regarding the collection and disclosure of information required for establishing or maintaining an organ donor registry in the province or territory.

Parliament’s consideration of a Private Members’ bill is determined by a specific process that follows the rules of Parliament. At the present time, Parliament has not yet scheduled Bill C-316 for consideration.

Should Bill C-316 be scheduled for consideration through the specific process mentioned above, the Government of Canada will review and respond to the bill. To respect the Parliamentary process, it would be premature for the Government of Canada to provide a position on Bill C-316 at this time. The petitioners may be assured that the CRA has taken note of the considerations they have presented and thanks them again for sharing their concerns."

http://www.parl.gc.ca/…/Respo…/421/e-642/421-01188_CRA_E.pdf

Liberal budget is a plan to nickel-and-dime Canadians

OTTAWA – MARCH 22, 2017
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tom Kmiec, Member of Parliament for Calgary Shepard, issued the following statement today following the tabling of Budget 2017:
“Canadians were hoping for a better outcome from the Liberal budget announced today. At a time when Liberals are making life more expensive, Justin Trudeau could have offered lower taxes and a job creation plan that actually works.
“Instead, Canadians are getting nickel-and-dimed by this Prime Minister so he can continue to fund flawed Liberal ideas.
“The budget unveiled by the Prime Minister and the Finance Minister today demonstrates very clearly that they simply don’t understand Canada’s middle class.
“Instead of raising taxes, Justin Trudeau should focus on supporting policies that will create jobs for young Canadians. In the last year Canadians aged 15-24 lost 42,000 full time jobs.
“Sadly, Liberal programs won’t help the vast majority of Canadian workers and businesses who now face much more intense competition from a low-cost, low-tax United States.
“Canadians deserve solutions to the challenges they face right now, not expensive programs for years down the road.
“Conservative will continue to be the voice of the taxpayer and we will not stay silent while Justin Trudeau nickel-and-dimes Canadians.”