Prairie Post (West Edition)

Cabinet portfolios pleasant surprise for MLA Neudorf


Nathan Neudorf had no idea he was going to be named to Alberta premier Danielle Smith’s new cabinet until he got a phone call Oct. 20.

Neudorf, the UCP MLA for Lethbridge East, was named co-deputy premier and Minister of Infrastruc­ture. Kaycee Madu, new minister of Intergover­nmental Affairs, is the other new deputy premier.

“I was surprised in the sense I didn’t know what was coming,” said Neudorf Oct. 24, adding he was hopeful for an appointmen­t after endorsing Smith as leader and working with her.

“There was nothing promised or negotiated or anything like that,” he said in a phone interview. “The call was very pleasant,” he said. Neudorf has a few goals he wants to achieve in coming months from conversati­ons he’s had with Alberta’s new premier.

The new deputy premier said Infrastruc­ture is “an interestin­g file. While there’s some responsibi­lity within it, a lot of funding for those capital projects come from other ministries, particular­ly Health or Seniors and Housing or Community and Social Services, those kind of things.

“So having not been a minister before, I don’t know exactly how it’s all intertwine­d,” Neudorf said, adding there will be collaborat­ion with such ministries as Municipal Affairs, Advanced Education and Education.

“Learning how they exactly coordinate together that’s something I’ll have to pick up very quickly,” Neudorf added.

For the past year-and-a-half, Neudorf has served as UCP caucus chair and discussion­s with the premier stem from that role as far as discussion­s about his deputy premier role goes.

Internal relations and communicat­ions are vital for government to function well, Neudorf said.

“Many ministries work together in many different ways to accomplish their tasks so one of my roles as deputy premier is to continue to facilitate that relationsh­ip between ministers if they have files that overlap or relationsh­ips between private members and ministers to make sure we accomplish needed projects in various ministries,” Neudorf added.

Lethbridge mayor Blaine Hyggen, in a statement to media Friday, offered congratula­tions to Neudorf as well as Smith and other members of her cabinet.

“I’d like to congratula­te Alberta Premier Danielle Smith and the members of her new cabinet on their placements announced today. Congratula­tions to Lethbridge East MLA Nathan Neudorf, who will take on new roles as Deputy Premier and Minister of Infrastruc­ture. We are excited to continue working with the provincial government to advance Lethbridge’s priorities. We also look forward to further advocating to incoming Minister of Municipal Affairs Rebecca Schulz on behalf of our residents and our city’s needs,” the mayor said.

The Lethbridge Chamber of Commerce also extended congratula­tions to the new co-deputy premier.

“MLA Neudorf is an excellent choice as Infrastruc­ture Minister,” said Cyndi Bester, CEO of the Lethbridge Chamber, in a statement to media on Monday. “He has been outspoken about the need for infrastruc­ture improvemen­ts, and we’re looking forward to working with him moving forward. It is also exciting to have a Deputy Premier serving as MLA in our city.”

 ?? THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson ?? Front row from left, Travis Toews, Nathan Neudorf, Kaycee Madu and Tyler Shandro wait to be sworn into cabinet in Edmonton, Monday, Oct. 24, 2022.
THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson Front row from left, Travis Toews, Nathan Neudorf, Kaycee Madu and Tyler Shandro wait to be sworn into cabinet in Edmonton, Monday, Oct. 24, 2022.

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