Town & Country – July 10, 2018 – UCP release rural crime report

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“[Colin Piquette] Our priority is to employ the tools that are actually within our power and within our jurisdiction, that’s something that I think is going to pay greater dividends on a provincial side.”

As part of the 2018 budget, the NDP increased funding for the justice ministry by $10 million to hire 59 extra RCMP officers and 20 Crown prosecutors, 10 of which are specifically dedicated to rural cases.

The government also plans for four additional judges to oversee cases, 55 more court clerks to work through the backlog, 40 new civilians to help police officers with their paperwork and 13 bail clerks to get bail hearings through the system faster. The funding also included $7.9 million to expand Legal Aid services.

“The resource allocations were developed in close consultation with the RCMP and I think we’re getting a big bang for our buck in results.” said Piquette. “Instead of using rural crime as a political talking point and a recruitment method, we’d rather actually take concrete steps improve the situation. Anyone who thinks it’s just a matter of throwing money at a problems has not really taken a look at what we’re doing.”

 

 

Athabasca Advocate – July 10, 2018 Fifteen Boyle School students take a bow as they finish their high school education

Athabasca-Sturgeon-Redwater MLA Colin Piquettte was one of the proud parents. He said he was very happy for his son, Luke. 

“I was really fortunate to see him share his moment with his classmates,” Piquette said. “Being a kid with special needs, it was not an easy thing for him to do.  He usually has some difficulties with crowds, but he managed to do a great job, and I was really impressed that he won an award too. I am very proud of him.”

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Canada Day Celebrations! – July 1, 2018

It’s always an honour to participate in local parades. I was able to take some time and volunteer at Thorhild’s Canada Day Rodeo and then later at the Athabasca River Rats festival. I hope everyone had a happy Canada Day! 

Town and Country – June 26, 2018 La Francophonie est forte en Alberta

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On the year anniversary of Alberta’s French policy, schools across the Town & Country region continue to see steady enrolment

Athabasca-Sturgeon-Redwater MLA ColinPiquette said that Francophone culture has come a long ways since his father, Leo Piquette, attempted to ask a question in the Legislature in French when he was the MLA for Athabasca-Lac La Biche in 1987.

“At the time, it caused a major controversy, with opponents thinking he was trying to bring in compulsory bilingualism within the Legislature,” Piquette said. “But he was really practicing his legal right under Section 10 of the Northwest Territories Act, which allowed French to be spoken in the Alberta and Saskatchewan legislatures.

In 1988, the Supreme Court of Canada even confirmed that. When I more recently spoke French in the Legislature, it was not a big deal at all.” Piquette said the province has become more inclusive and pragmatic in terms of understanding its historical obligations.

“Alberta now has one of the fastest growing Francophone communities in the country,” he said. “People moving to the province are bringing a lot of skills, knowledge, and talent. Having that level of respect for the French language and culture is definitely more of a boon for us than a hindrance.”