April 4, 2012 (Edmonton, AB): Today, Wildrose Leader Danielle Smith explained how the Alberta Energy Dividend will help Alberta students cope with the ever-increasing cost of obtaining a post-secondary education and help parents begin saving for their children’s education. The Alberta Energy Dividend, the third item in the Wildrose Pledge, would send 20% of budget surpluses directly to Albertans.
The dividend would help students make ends meet while working on a university or college degree or trade school certification. It will also give parents the opportunity to start post-secondary education funds for their children at an early age. “The Alberta Energy Dividend will help alleviate some of the financial pressures students face and help parents save up for their children’s post-secondary education,” said Smith. “By giving Albertans a direct share in our resource wealth, we are helping make life more affordable for students and helping parents get a head start on their children’s education.” The Alberta Energy Dividend will:
- Send 20% of all provincial surpluses generated by oil and gas revenues directly to Albertans, providing every Albertan with an estimated dividend of $300 in 2015. That’s $1,200 for a family of four.
- Ensure Alberta remains well-positioned to meet economic challenges by only paying out energy dividends when the provincial budget runs a cash surplus.
- Help low- and fixed-income families and seniors during times of economic prosperity and rising inflation.
Unlike previous one-time government energy payouts, the Alberta Energy Dividend is a prudent, disciplined fiscal initiative derived entirely from budget surpluses, after all other expenditures are covered. It has been analyzed by economists as fiscally sound, and endorsed by the Canadian Taxpayers Federation as a permanent constraint on the growth of government. “Albertans own our natural resources. They deserve to share in the wealth they create,” Smith said. “The PCs have squandered Alberta’s resource wealth, lining their own pockets and paying for their wasteful pet projects. The Alberta Energy Dividend will see Albertans – not politicians – benefit directly from the prosperity of our energy sector.”