GP Wapiti MLA Wayne Drsydale and Finance Minister Joe Ceci had an, at times, heated discussion in Question Period this week. The subject was federal tax changes and their impact on farmers.
Drysdale asked “Alberta’s family farms are deeply worried about the pending tax changes coming from Ottawa. Farmers spending countless hours harvesting in the past month have not taken kindly to the smear of their farms being called tax shelters. Has this government raised Alberta’s farmer’s concerns with their federal counterpart?”
Ceci replied that the provincial government is bringing in tax cuts.
“The federal government’s responsibility is to ensure there is fairness. They are looking at the unintended consequences and changing their plan as a result, Mr. Speaker.”
When Drsydale asked if the government would denounce the proposed tax changes, Ceci accused the opposition of wanting to cancel the government’s Climate Leadership Plan and talked about government programs he says are set up to help small businesses.
Drysdale then asked the following question.
“Given that I cannot understand why the government is so unwilling to speak up on this issue and given that, since the NDP has such a strong relationship with the current federal government, will they not speak up, given what’s at stake or is the friendly relationship with the Trudeau Liberals more important than fighting for Alberta farmers?”
In response, Ceci jumped on the previous government’s record on pipelines.
“If we want to talk about speaking up, let’s talk about pipelines and that side couldn’t get anywhere with pipelines. We spoke up for pipelines. Mr. Speaker, jobs are up in this province. Wages are up in this province. Growth is up in this province because of this side, not that side, Mr. Speaker.”