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Farm bill hot topic at UCP debate in Red Deer
Farm bill hot topic at UCP debate in Red Deer

Alberta party’s leadership candidates focus on ag, social issues

By: Kate Ayers

Staff Reporter

Alberta’s four United Conservative leadership candidates promised yesterday to end the NDP government’s farm safety bill if elected in 2019.

Jeff Callaway, Brian Jean, Jason Kenney and Doug Schweitzer outlined intentions to revoke Bill 6 during a leadership debate in Red Deer last night, according to a CBC online news article.

“Bill 6 was an unnecessary attack on Alberta farmers and I believe our Conservative government should repeal it within weeks of forming office,” said Kenney on stage.

The farm safety bill was passed December 2015, subjecting farms and ranches to health and safety rules, despite producer opposition.

“We have to look around and listen to them,” Jean said. “You know, like actually having a committee hearing and invite farmers and ranchers and those groups that represent them. What a surprise that would be.”

Besides agriculture, other topics of discussion last night included the national carbon tax, the Kinder-Morgan pipeline expansion, equalization payments and providing services for lower-income Albertans.

Two more debates are scheduled (Fort McMurray on Oct. 12 and Lethbridge on Oct. 17) before a leader will be chosen. Voting starts on Oct. 26 with the winner announced Oct. 28 in Calgary.