AIRDRIE, AB (February 28, 2014): Wildrose Finance Critic Rob Anderson released the following statement today on Premier Alison Redford’s $9,200 flight from Palm Springs to Calgary: “Albertans are understandably upset about the Premier's misuse of taxpayer dollars in flying herself and an assistant to South Africa for $45,000 when it cost her counterpart in Nova Scotia less than 1/45th that amount.
Albertans are even more upset with her refusal to pay back what was clearly not hers to spend. “This is why new revelations regarding the flying of a government plane to pick Ms. Redford and three others up from her vacation in Palm Springs raise some questions that require answering. “Although we fully support her decision to return to Calgary to attend the funeral of the late Premier Ralph Klein, we have some concerns on how it was handled and the final cost of $9,200. “Firstly, Ms. Redford knew about the funeral for roughly a week before it was held. Why then did she not book an inexpensive commercial flight to return from Palm Springs at roughly a tenth of the cost of flying in the government plane? “Secondly, the reason the Premier’s Office provided for not flying commercially was reports of bad wind shear. This is quite certainly a complete fabrication. Not only is the excuse odd given that wind shear would be even more dangerous to a lighter government plane than a commercial airliner; but further, the reports of the strong wind shear were made three days prior to her leaving Palm Springs. In other words, the weather was not a factor in this decision. Why did her office again fail to tell the truth just as they failed to do so regarding the South Africa debacle? “If the Premier and her office would simply stop pedaling lame excuses and provide us with a truthful explanation to these questions, Albertans would greatly appreciate it.”