April 13, 2012 (Edmonton, AB): Today, Wildrose Leader Danielle Smith reissued the challenge she made to Alison Redford during yesterday’s leaders debate, calling on her to roll back the 30% pay hikes she and her cabinet colleagues gave themselves after the 2008 provincial election. “Last night, Alison Redford failed to show leadership and she failed to deliver, so today I’m reissuing the challenge.
Ms. Redford should commit today to roll back the exorbitant cabinet pay raises she and her colleagues helped themselves to four years ago,” Smith said. “Leadership isn’t telling everyone else what to do and then doing the opposite. Leadership is about sacrifice. It’s about taking a hit yourself to show that you mean it. That’s why she should accept this challenge today.” Rather than do the right thing and give up their entitlements, the Redford PCs have punted the issue of MLA compensation until after the election. Redford remains the highest paid premier in Canada, and her retiring or soon-to-be-defeated colleagues are poised to walk away with tens of millions in severance payoffs. Under the Wildrose Pledge to pass the Alberta Accountability Act, a new Wildrose government will roll back the 30% increase in salary for cabinet ministers, have an independent committee determine MLA salaries before elections, reduce the severance payments to one month’s pay for every year of service to a maximum of 12 months, and require full public disclosure of minister and MLA expenses. “Alison Redford is a day late and a dollar short in failing to roll back these pay hikes and promising to look at all this after the election,” Smith said. “If they don’t make the right decision before April 23, I expect Albertans to make the right decision on the Redford PCs and their culture of entitlement on April 23.”