MLA Hanson vying for re-election after wins during his term

*The following is a paid for message from David Hanson*

MLA Dave Hanson is seeking your vote to be the UCP nominee for the Bonnyville-Cold Lake-St. Paul constituency once again.

With UCP nominations complete by the end of the day on Thursday, Hanson touted some of wins over his three-and-a-half years as reasons to look at him during this campaign.

“Number one, I’ve fought very hard to make sure that the north, the entire north region is recognized for our contribution to the economy, and I say that all the time, and I talked about the bitumen royalties that we produce,” Hanson said. 

He said issues that have been resolved include getting a registries office open in Bonnyville, the modernization of BCHS, and the settling of ID 349 to keep consistent linear taxation revenues from the Cold Lake Air Weapons Range are wins for the area.

“I brought that forward to Minister Glubish when he actually came out here. We had a community meeting with a bunch of business owners as well as registry people and came up with a solution that works. And like I said, now, you can actually go register a vehicle, get a driver’s license, and have your test done right here in Bonnyville. So that’s a big one,” he said. 

“A community project that was just stagnated, sitting on the books, no action at all, was the Bonnyville Centralized High School…I talked to two ministries, education and infrastructure, and we got some extra funding to pay the bill for the C2 Center to keep the kids there till the project was finished.

“I think with Bonnyville it comes out to seven or $8 million a year (in ID funds)that we have to spend here on infrastructure and make our own decisions on it. Glendon gets close to a million dollars, so it’s huge for that little community, the M.D. of Bonnyville gets a couple of million dollars for the maintenance and rebuilds or whatever it takes for the main highway going up to the Air Weapons Range, and in the City of Cold Lake still gets a fairly good sizable chunk to do what they need to do up there.

“It was one of the things that I campaigned on. I was actually warned by previous MLAs, don’t go there. That’s a dead end. And no, I campaigned on it in 2019 to get it fixed. We did get it fixed. And I’d like to thank all of the municipal leaders that were involved in that, that worked with me to come to a solution that we can all live with.” 

Moving forward

After the election of Premier Danielle Smith, Dave Hanson is one of three deputy house leaders, along with Kaycee Madu and Mickey Amery. He is also the Parliamentary Secretary for Procurement Transformation and remains the chair of the Northern Alberta Development Council. 

He believes that Smith will listen when it comes to benefitting the northern regions of the province.

“I think we’re gonna see some some action finally up here. She recognizes the contribution of the North. When we talked about a fair deal for Alberta with Ottawa, I always kind of push for, how about a fair deal for northern Alberta?” he said. 

The UCP are coming off a balanced budget with a $13 billion surplus, thirty per cent of which came from this area, said Hanson.

“If we have to pay our doctors, nurses, teachers a little bit more up here, we contribute a lot. We contribute a lot and we need to make it in our communities.

“I’m going to continue to push for better. Highway 28 is the number one thing. It’s looking very promising, but we need to get it moved up the priority list.” 

IPCA 

Hanson is opposed to the introduction of an Indigenous Protected Conservation Area in the Wolf Lake area, in which a feasibility study is being done currently.

What an IPCA entails is unclear. But the Metis Settlements General Council launched the study with federal dollars. A large gathering with hundreds of residents in attendance happened at Willow Prairie Hall weeks ago where Hanson was one of those who spoke against the IPCA.

He said his work with the Caribou Sub-Regional Task Force to protect the habitat of the area was ratified and that the federal government is overstepping provincial jurisdiction.

“The federal government had kind of pushed us to come up with a plan to do some restoration and restore those herds, so we did. We met, there was 240 hours of meetings with a really good group of people, 14 different members of the committee in which the Metis Settlements General Council was a part of,” he said. 

“We came up with a plan to restore habitat and bring back caribou herds. That plan was given then to the federal government, they approved it and signed a Section 11 agreement under the Species at Risk Act. That leaves the control and purview of public lands and species at risk under the provinces purview. 

“Currently, the Wolf Lake or the Cold Lake Sub Region is at about 9 per cent of undisturbed lands. The requirement from the UN and from the federal government was to get back to 65 per cent of undisturbed, so we have come up with that plan. It’s a 50 to 100 year plan to restore some habitat. I’s going to be good for traditional use, and for the average recreational user as well. And all those people were around the table and helped us come up with this plan,” he continued. 

“They [federal government] don’t have a bit of a leg to stand on in this. They’re just providing money to cause disruption in our communities and I’m very disappointed in them. Like I say, I don’t blame the Metis Settlements General Council, if somebody gives you money to do a feasibility study, you’re going to do it.” 

Nominations and memberships

The nomination period ends Nov. 17 and the election for the UCP representative for the Bonnyville-Cold Lake-St. Paul area is from Dec. 8-10.

In order to vote, you must be a UCP member.

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