April 12, 2012
Reality Check: PCs Mislead Albertans On K-12 And Post-Secondary Infrastructure Promises
The PC s are being irresponsible and are misleading Albertans by playing fast and loose with their expensive and unbudgeted campaign promises. Finally realizing their campaign promise tab was at $7 billion with no plan to pay for these lavish announcements, the Redford PCs are backtracking.
Last week, the PCs made an eye-popping $2.4 billion new spending announcement to build new schools, telling Albertans that, “over the next four years, these schools will be completed.”(http://www.votepc.ca/admin/contentx/dpNews/launch.cfm?itemid=2422&r=10187) Days later the PCs then announced another $650 million on capital funding (that conveniently put $86 million dollars in Redford’s own riding before a local candidate’s debate), saying, “A Progressive Conservative government will enhance post-secondary facilities across the province.” (http://www.votepc.ca/admin/contentx/dpNews/launch.cfm?itemid=2422&r=10187) These announcements were all announced as unbudgeted costs coming on the heels of a budget passed mere weeks ago. With pressure from the Canadian Taxpayers Federation, the PC s suddenly flipped the switch by adding a huge caveat to these announcements: they would only be paid for out of future surpluses. This must be news for the school boards, schools, and post-secondary institutions that would be impacted by this announcement - including the President of NorQuest College, who sent an email to all employees saying, “The PC Party of Alberta today announced a funding commitment proposal of $170 million for the construction of NorQuest’s North Learning Centre.” (http://archive.wildrose.ca/media/2012/04/April-10.PDF) Promising schools contingent upon surpluses is extremely poor policy; with the PCs track record of 5 years of deficit it’s clear that this funding is far from solid. This back track and flip flop is yet another sign of a desperate campaign making things up as they go along. Wildrose stands for free enterprise, less government, increased personal freedom, and democracy.