Ezra, my Ezra, why hast thou forsaken me?

It being Lent and all, I was canvassing Scripture and – bear with me here – I was reminded of Ezra Levant and his Rebels

Ezra, my Ezra, why hast thou forsaken me?It being Lent and all, I was canvassing Scripture and – bear with me here – I was reminded of Ezra Levant and his Rebels. Rona Ambrose may think she is the Leader of the Opposition, but she isn’t. Ezra is. As a lawyer, a political assistant, a magazine publisher, a newspaper columnist, a TV…

Kudos, and caveats, for Alberta’s royalty review

The recommendation that the provincial government “seize opportunities to enhance value-added processing” could turn into a fiasco

Kudos, and caveats, for Alberta’s royalty reviewBy Kenneth P. Green and Steve Lafleur The Fraser Institute On Friday, Jan. 29, the Government of Alberta released the long-anticipated report of the Royalty Review Advisory Panel. The review, a campaign promise by the NDP government, was the source of some anxiety in the province. As evidenced in a recent Fraser Institute bulletin, investor…

Notley government’s royalty retreat a lost opportunity

The industry wins, and Albertans lose, again

Notley government’s royalty retreat a lost opportunityOne can only imagine the panic in the NDP backrooms as oil prices crumpled while the Alberta Royalty Review panel ground its way through the issues: “Guys, times are tough, is this really the hill we want to die on?” Clearly the answer is no; the Review panel released its finding and – no surprise…

Alberta wage freeze good first step in getting finances back on track

But even bolder steps to reduce provincial spending needed if the province is not to face greater fiscal challenges down the road

Alberta wage freeze good first step in getting finances back on trackBy Steve Lafleur and Ben Eisen The Fraser Institute Alberta Finance Minister Joe Ceci recently announced a wage freeze for public-sector managers and non-unionized public employees. The freeze will maintain 2015 salary levels for 7,000 employees until “at least April 2018.” While this is a welcome first step, the estimated $57 million in savings over…

NDP out of step with average Albertans

It is becoming “routine” for union bosses to be appointed to public bodies

NDP out of step with average AlbertansIn the federal election last fall 60 per cent of Albertans voted Conservative. Twelve per cent voted NDP. The provincial NDP was unimpressed. They have continued to govern as if they actually won the election last spring, not that the PCs lost it. Alberta now enjoys a $3 billion carbon tax, which was unmentioned in…

Bad economic news just keeps hammering Alberta

The collapse in oil prices aggravated by Notley government’s economically damaging policies

Bad economic news just keeps hammering AlbertaBy Steve Lafleur and Ben Eisen The Fraser Institute The year 2015 was a difficult one for Alberta’s economy. First, the province was hit by a major decline in oil prices. Then, the provincial government introduced a slew of economically damaging policies, tarnishing Alberta’s reputation for providing a pro-growth tax and regulatory environment. These policies…

Political turmoil won’t end soon in Alberta

The political sand is shifting rapidly in Alberta and a break one way or another could open the door to another dynasty

Political turmoil won’t end soon in AlbertaEveryone is looking back on 2015 at this time of year, but it might be more instructive to peer ahead, at Alberta politicians’ New Year’s resolutions – and the juicy headlines sure to follow. It’s hard to imagine a year more wild than the one Rachel Notley has just experienced. She went from being the…

Alberta credit downgrade a wake-up call to change course

The recent credit downgrade by Standard and Poor’s is another sign of the severity of Alberta’s fiscal problems

Alberta credit downgrade a wake-up call to change courseBy Steve Lafleur and Charles Lammam The Fraser Institute Alberta Finance Minister Joe Ceci was handed some disappointing news in advance of the holidays. Standard and Poor’s, a prominent government credit rating agency,downgraded Alberta’s rating, citing weak budgetary performance and a rising debt burden. This remarkable development underscores just how badly Alberta’s fiscal position has…

Premier Notley right to reconsider $15 minimum wage

Too much at stake for Alberta workers to enter the “uncharted waters” of a $15 minimum wage without assessing the potential dangers

Premier Notley right to reconsider $15 minimum wageBy Steve Lafleur and Hugh McIntyre The Fraser Institute In a recent interview, Premier Rachel Notley seemed to hint that the Government of Alberta could slow its plan to increase the minimum wage to $15 if the economy remains weak. The premier’s comments came one day after it was reported that an internal government briefing…

Notley government policies reducing Albertans living standards

Recently implemented policies will negatively impact living standards and economic opportunities

Notley government policies reducing Albertans living standardsBy Niels Veldhuis Ben Eisen and Fred McMahon The Fraser Institute Until recently, Alberta was the most economically free jurisdiction in North America. High levels of economic freedom fostered prosperity and growth, helping make Alberta one of the most affluent jurisdictions on the continent. However, the Alberta government recently implemented a series of policy changes…