Join me in Athabasca Friday November 30

Join us this Friday November 30 in Athabasca, Colin, Harley and other proud Albertans will be handing our candy canes in the Athabasca Moonlight madness parade!
Contact the office for more details 780-372-4988
Harley the office dog 
Harley (our office dog) invites everyone to join us Friday, November 30, 2018 in Athabasca!

Telephone Townhall with MLA Piquette November 28th 6pm

All constituents with a landline will receive a call from MLA Piquette to invite them to a town hall meeting taking place this Wednesday at 6 pm.

To participate all you have to do is answer the phone when we call approximately 10 minutes prior to the start of the meeting (5:50 PM).

If you miss the call or don’t receive one by 6 PM then please call our office at 780-675-3232 for further instructions.

We hope everyone is able to listen in and be a part of the discussion. Having such a physically large constituency can be a challenge and we apologize if the calls are inconvenient or unwelcome. A large call-in meeting ensures almost everyone has the opportunity to attend and have their voice heard. We thank those who are interested for taking the time to participate.

If you would like to speak with MLA Piquette personally, please contact his constituency office and the staff would be happy to set up an appointment.

Rural Crime: Member’s Statement November 20,2018

On November 20th I followed up on a question I asked  the  Minister of Justice  on our government’s  rural crime strategy this spring  (you can see that statement here).  Here I note the progress made to date and what more needs to be done:

 Last spring I rose in this House to speak on Alberta’s rural crime reduction plan. Rural property crime was spiking, and action needed to be taken, so our government listened to the needs of Albertans and in concert with the RCMP came up with a plan. That plan has already reduced rural property crime by 11 per cent. By expanding rural crime reduction units across Alberta, adding Crown prosecutors, adding crime mapping experts, and providing more civilian support, the new tactics are already starting to make a difference. Our investments are working.

I have seen this first-hand in my own constituency of Athabasca-Sturgeon-Redwater. For example, not long ago break-ins were spiraling out of control in Calling Lake. Residents told me heartbreaking stories of having possessions stolen and having their privacy violated. However, a crime reduction unit was able to come to Calling Lake, and in close co-operation with Athabasca RCMP and the local community break-ins have been dramatically reduced.

It’s not just my constituency where the strategy is working. The RCMP has attributed the reduction of crime across the province to the strategy. But we know that not every community has seen these reductions yet, and that’s why we will keep fighting to make sure that they do.

When the Alberta crime reduction plan was voted on in the spring, I was amazed to see the UCP oppose it. This issue was more important than what side of the House we sit on. It is about making life safer for Albertans. I am grateful for the Minister of Justice’s work and to be part of a government committed to reducing rural crime.

But there is still much work that needs to be done. We will continue to listen to Albertans, work with law enforcement and with our local community partners, and continue with the strategy that has been proven to work to ensure that Albertans are safer (Source)

NDPers fired up after party AGM; Athabasca MLA Colin Piquette highlights motions to expand rural broadband access and $25 a day daycare

 

The province is at a fork in the road; are we going to be taking care of those among us who need it? Are we going to educate our children properly? Are we going to have the infrastructure to be able to grow our economy and provide a good living for our people? Or are we going to turn back the clock?”– MLA Colin Piquette

Town and Country Nov 6, 2018. Used with permission.

New school’s first day; Dignitaries, students cut ribbon on Athabasca’s new Edwin Parr Composite School at grand opening ceremony Oct. 23

“Edwin Parr Composite School is a state-of-the-art school that will inspire students to excel and provide the opportunities to discover and explore their interests,” [Piquette]  said.

Athabasca Advocate, Tue Oct 30 2018
Byline: Allendria Brunjes
Source: Athabasca Advocate

After years of planning, scrapping, reworking and building, the new Edwin Parr Composite School is officially open for staff and students. On Oct. 23, staff, students and local dignitaries cut the ribbon for the new institution, celebrating with drumming, dancing, speeches and cake. Former Aspen View Public Schools superintendent Mark Francis was on hand for the celebrations, and he said the school was not only being built for the students there right now, but for generations. “In fact, what will happen is that some of the kids sitting here today, they will have kids that will attend here, and then they will have grandchildren that will attend here,” he said. “We build schools not for today, but for generations.”

Board chair Dennis MacNeil joked that his tie featured the pattern of a finish line. “It’s nice to be at the finish line,” he said. “We’re here. Finally, it’s here. This is the day we’ve all been waiting for, after all these years of planning, dreaming and building. Edwin Parr Composite School is now ours, and it belongs to you – the students of the town. It belongs to the staff; it belongs to the community.”

Athabasca-Sturgeon-Redwater MLA Colin Piquette noted that EPC is the first new school in Alberta with solar panels. “Edwin Parr Composite School is a state-of-the-art school that will inspire students to excel and provide the opportunities to discover and explore their interests,” he said.

Former teacher and Athabasca County Reeve Larry Armfelt said he has had 46 first-days-of-school. He said he could not help but wish students the best in their educations.

“And I want to thank Mr. MacNeil and the board of education for, in my opinion – if I can make an analogy, and I said it to Mr. MacNeil this morning – thank you for having the tenacity of a Sherpa guide to make this happen.” Francis, who is now the deputy superintendent of the Parkland School Division based in Stony Plain, said he is building schools all over the place in his new job. “Let me tell you – none of the schools we are building or have opened come close to this building,” he said. “One of the previous speakers said this building is one-of-akind and there will never be another like it. I fully intend to steal from this building.”

Elder Elsie Paul has worked with Aspen View Public Schools for about 10 years. Introducing her, Grade 12 student Ethan Woodward said she has been working with the Land-Based Learning program. “I’m so inspired by these little Elders, the drummer and the jigger,” she said, referring to performers who opened the ceremony. “Because all you young people are our Elders.”

Marie Burrard is Edwin Parr’s niece, and she was at the grand opening ceremony. She said Parr believed all children should get the best education schools could offer. “Today marks a milestone in the history of education,” she said. “Why Edwin Parr? He was a school trustee starting in 1925. He was one of five in the formation of the Athabasca School Division. This was in time to be what is now Aspen View School Division.”

Piquette also noted during his speech that the new school was not without controversy as it was being built. After the ceremony, Piquette said there had been concerns that location was not a coincidence, but after going through records of the process available through Alberta Education and Alberta Infrastructure, as well as meeting with the Town of Athabasca, Athabasca County and school board, he believes due diligence was done. “The numbers did make sense, and the location makes a lot of sense, as well,” he said, noting that some of the issues have already been addressed, like upgrading the intersection at the bottom of University Drive. “I think it’s a great day for Athabasca.” He said it was indeed a complicated arrangement requiring land transfers, Orders in Council. He said going through that, he became convinced that the school project made a lot of sense for the community. “There’s going to be a segment of the community that either is still convinced that we didn’t need a new school or that it should have been built in a different location,” Piquette said. “But from what I can tell, it seems like the majority of the community has come around to the new school in its present location.”

Francis said the project did have its fair share of challenges, and it did take a long time. “Like MLA Piquette said, it was worth the debate,” Francis said. “It was worth the wait, and it was worth the challenges, because today we have a spectacular building.”