Doherty leaves cabinet
Advanced Education Minister Kevin Doherty is resigning from cabinet.
The Regina-Northeast MLA is remaining in his seat, but will no longer serve as a minister to “focus on family issues that have arisen recently.”
Doherty had served as the province’s finance minister until this summer, when he was replaced and put in the smaller Advanced Education portfolio.
He was the finance minister when, earlier this year, the province posted a $685-million deficit budget.
That was in March and Doherty faced months of intense criticism for the unpopular budget, which resulted in significant cuts to education, health and social services as well as a plan for a smaller civil service.
In August, after Premier Brad Wall announced his retirement, many believed Doherty was prepared to become the successor. Doherty did not throw his hat into the race currently taking place to name a new leader of the Saskatchewan Party and, by extension, premier.
Instead of being a potential premier, Doherty took a step back that month when he was named Advanced Education minister. The smaller portfolio left many questioning Doherty’s motives for the demotion, but he told reporters it was at his request.
He said he wanted a break from the finance position, but that Wall requested he stay on as a member of the cabinet.
Now, Doherty will be replaced by Battlefords MLA Herb Cox. First elected in 2011, Cox served as the province’s environment minister until August 2016, when he stepped down from the job because of health reasons.
Kevin Doherty speaks with reporters after the release of the 2016-17 Public Accounts.