Chevel­day­off touts ex­pe­ri­ence in P.A.

Crime, health­care, en­trepreneur­ship big is­sues as lead­er­ship can­di­date makes cam­paign stop on Mon­day

Prince Albert Daily Herald - - FRONT PAGE - JASON KERR

When Premier Brad Wall an­nounced his res­ig­na­tion he said re­newal would be good for the party, but one of Saskatchewan’s most prom­i­nent cab­i­net min­is­ters is con­fi­dent that ex­pe­ri­ence will carry the day.

Lead­er­ship can­di­date Ken Chevel­day­off, who served as min­is­ter in five dif­fer­ent port­fo­lios, said vot­ers are look­ing for lead­er­ship this elec­tion. With his ex­pe­ri­ence he’s con­fi­dent he can de­liver.

“I think that the bal­lot ques­tion is go­ing to be, who’s go­ing to be the best premier and who can win the elec­tion for the Sask. Party in ru­ral and ur­ban Saskatchewan,” the Saska­toon Wil­low­grove MLA said. “I like my chances on that ques­tion.”

Chevel­day­off made the com­ments dur­ing a trip to Prince Al­bert on Mon­day. He spoke to room of vot­ers for more than half-an­hour be­fore tak­ing ques­tions.

The long-time MLA listed food se­cu­rity, en­trepreneur­ship and the fed­eral car­bon tax as some of the ma­jor prov­ince-wide cam­paign is­sues. When it comes to Prince Al­bert, crime, health­care and a new bridge con­tinue to be gain at­ten­tion.

Chevel­day­off said Prince Al­bert was “next on the list” for a new hos­pi­tal, but wanted the new prov­ince-wide health author­ity to take a look at the is­sue be­fore get­ting into de­tails like the cost break­down.

He also called for an in­creased pres­ence from po­lice of­fi­cers, es­pe­cially in ru­ral ar­eas, and said of­fi­cers should spend more time in schools in an ed­u­ca­tional role.

“I think we have to have more of those of­fi­cers in our schools, be­ing able to be able to talk to peo­ple,” he said. “When I talk to law en­force­ment in­di­vid­u­als they tell me that if you can get to kids in that Grade 7 to Grade 9 age group, you can af­fect their life go­ing for­ward, and I think that’s some­thing where govern­ment has a role.”

While Chevel­day­off never called out any of his cur­rent or for­mer lead­er­ship com­peti­tors by name, he did of­fer a few crit­i­cisms

Meadow Lake MLA Jeremy Har­ri­son an­nounced his can­di­dacy for party leader on Aug. 19, but with­drew from the race less than a month later. Chevel­day­off said if vot­ers do­nate to your cam­paign you owe it to them to see it through to the end. He plans to do just that.

“I think that the bal­lot ques­tion is go­ing to be, who’s go­ing to be the best premier and who can win the elec­tion for the Sask. Party ...I like my chances on that ques­tion.” Ken Chevel­day­off

“I will be there right un­til Jan. 27,” he said.

How­ever the big­gest crit­i­cism sur­rounded the car­bon tax. Chevel­day­off said many lead­er­ship can­di­dates op­pose the tax, but not all can ex­plain why.

“I think all can­di­dates in this elec­tion for leader will be against it, but where do you go from here? How do you pro­vide an al­ter­na­tive?” he said.

Chevel­day­off stated that he is un­equiv­o­cally against the car­bon tax, and thinks it’s pos­si­ble for farm­ers and crop sci­en­tists to come up with new in­no­va­tions that in­crease the pho­to­syn­the­sis in plants. He said that would be just as ef­fec­tive as a car­bon tax, and bet­ter for the econ­omy.

“Given the choice be­tween spend­ing money on in­no­va­tion and hav­ing a car­bon tax, I’ll spend money on in­no­va­tion ev­ery time,” he said.

If elected, Chevel­day­off has vowed to re­visit the new PST charge on in­sur­ance. As part of the 2017 bud­get, the pro­vin­cial govern­ment added a list of new items PST would ap­ply to, like in­sur­ance pre­mi­ums. Chevel­day­off said he wants to see a com­mis­sion set up to help im­ple­ment a bet­ter tax sys­tem.

Chevel­day­off was first elected as MLA for Saska­toon Silver Springs in 2003, and was re­elected in 2007 and 2011. He was elected as MLA for Saska­toon Wil­low­grove in 2016 af­ter bound­ary changes were made to the elec­toral map.

He has served as Min­is­ter of First Na­tions and Me­dia Re­la­tions, Min­is­ter Re­spon­si­ble for the Saskatchewan Gam­ing Cor­po­ra­tion, Min­is­ter re­spon­si­ble for North­ern Af­fairs, Min­is­ter of En­vi­ron­ment, Min­is­ter re­spon­si­ble for Saskatchewan Wa­ter­shed Author­ity, Min­is­ter Re­spon­si­ble for Saskatchewan Wa­ter Cor­po­ra­tion and most re­cently as the Min­is­ter of Parks, Cul­ture and Sport.

“I think all can­di­dates in this elec­tion for leader will be against it, but where do you go from here? How do you pro­vide an al­ter­na­tive?” Saskatchewan Party lead­er­ship can­di­date Ken Chevel­day­off

JASON KERR/DAILY HER­ALD

Saskatchewan Party lead­er­ship can­di­date Ken Chevel­day­off speaks to vot­ers dur­ing a cam­paign stop in Prince Al­bert on Mon­day.

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