And this week, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is unveiling the details of his plan to hike taxes on local business.
Today in the House of Commons, I reminded the Liberal government that Canadian small businesses are the heartbeat of our economy, that they should be respected for the jobs and opportunities they create in our communities.
Small business owners at my roundtable on the unfair tax hike in Edmonton roundly blasted the proposed Trudeau/Morneau small biz tax changes.
Our participants (including two accountants) say if the Liberal plan is carried out it will have a wide-ranging negative impact on everything from family farms, to mom and pop businesses, to the ability for Canada to retain doctors.
All these people vow to continue opposing these changes and they’re encouraging everyone they know to call, write and e-mail federal Liberal members of Parliament demanding they stop this ill-advised damaging scheme.
Please do YOUR part by speaking out loudly. Conservatives will fight this tax hike every step of the way.
Together we can make the Grits stop this insane tax-grab scheme.
By KERRY DIOTTE
As a federal politician, crime, justice and community safety are almost always at the top of the list of concerns I hear about from people.
These topics have especially dominated the news and the minds of many people I’ve talked to lately.
Just the other day I met with constituents in my local office, both of whom were crying out for changes to the way we seek to have safer communities.
One 77-year-old man complained he and his wife had suffered 54 break-ins or petty crimes in and around their Londonderry area home since 1990.
Few people were arrested for the offences, despite the fact that he’s got scores of surveillance video, he told me.
What’s more, he said their farm in Mayorthorpe was hit by thieves and vandals who made off with $40,000 in stolen goods and did $30,000 in vandalism.
The man is upset there aren’t more police resources to probe such crimes. He figures Canada needs to toughen laws to put repeat offenders away for longer stretches. “It’s become a justice industry,” he says. “It’s not justice.”
A retired veteran of the Edmonton Police Service (EPS) I met with the same day echoed similar frustration with the approach to public safety.
His concern centres around a lack of resources from the federal government to deal with people released from federal prisons, deemed to be high risk to re-offend “sexually or violently.”
The former EPS officer who’s still active in the criminal justice system says these high-risk ex-cons have typically been kept in prison until the last day of their sentences and don’t get the benefit of statutory release.
The former officer told me a trio of city police detectives in Edmonton do their best to supervise an average of 30 of these high-risk offenders who walk among us — a high percentage of those ex-cons being sex offenders.
The retired officer argues more resources are direly needed to stop these hardest of hardened ex-cons from re-offending. As proof the system isn’t working, he brought me a list of eight such, hard-core ex-cons who indeed did re-offend.
Those re-offences include the aggravated assault of a woman confined to a wheelchair, sex assaults against children under the age of 16 and several homicides, he said.
“If these cases are going to remain the responsibility of policing agencies across Canada, they need proper funding from the federal government for training and adequate personnel,” he said.
To me, that’s a no brainer.
The concerns of these two men are the tip of the iceberg. Recently Edmonton Journal columnist Paula Simons lamented that Canada has a “broken court system.”
Simons raised numerous concerns including that courts don’t have enough judges or other resources to deal with the workload.
I believe that’s particularly true because of a Supreme Court ruling called the Jordan decision. That ruling means accused criminals must get a trial is a timely manner or they must be released.
Canadians have already been shocked that several people charged with violent crimes didn’t get a trial fast enough and were released scott free.
Simons rightly a point out it’s a federal government responsibility to appoint federal judges and there are a whack of vacancies.
This is hardly news to our Conservative caucus.
We’ve been hammering at the federal Liberal justice minister for months now as vacancies for judges remained unfilled for no good reason.
When repeatedly questioned in the House of Commons by Conservative deputy justice critic Michael Cooper, Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould has blathered a lot of non-sensical excuses for the delay including talking about the fact we need to aim for “diversity” when hiring judges.
In my view, public safety can’t take a back seat when there aren’t enough judges appointed and people charged with murder and other violent crimes are walking free without being tried.
Another controversy keeping crime high on people’s radar was the recent defeat of Wynn’s Law by the federal Liberal majority government.
Backed by Conservatives, it would have closed a loophole in the law so that those applying for bail would have to have their criminal records and pending charges shown to a judge.
Liberals made a bogus argument that, somehow, disclosing someone’s criminal record or pending charges would bog down the justice system. Just TRY to figure out that loopy Liberal logic.
Violent crime has also been much on the minds of many in Edmonton, in part because the city had experienced more than two dozen homicides and 2017 is only half over. By June 29 the city had recorded its 25th murder.
The spike in murders was enough for police to call a news conference to ally public fears and reassure citizens the city is still relatively safe.
Given all these recent headlines, it’s understandable Canadians are worried about community safety and concerned not enough is being done by governments to assure the public.
Public safety should be a top priority for any government. Our Conservative opposition will continue to urge the Liberal government to fill vacancies in the federal courts and stand up for victims of crime and law-abiding Canadians.
E-mail me at email@example.com to share your thoughts on these issues.
My Conservative colleagues and I have met with thousands of everyday Albertans to discuss the jobs crisis in the province.
We’ve heard your stories of how this crisis has impacted you. And, we’ve heard your ideas on how the federal government can help get Albertan back to work.
Today, our Alberta Conservative caucus released the Alberta Jobs Taskforce report that includes practical solutions to help create jobs and grow the economy in Alberta.
Read the full report here.
By KERRY DIOTTE
We’ve heard a lot about carbon taxes lately.
In Ottawa, the Liberal government and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau have enthusiastically touted imposing a carbon tax nationwide as a way to actually create scores of new jobs (believe it or not).
In reality, a carbon tax will cripple our economy and lead to job losses.
My Conservative colleagues and I are fighting tooth and nail to stop this ill-conceived tax grab.
Here are my Top 10 good reasons Canada’s federal government shouldn’t impose a carbon tax.
- Day-to-day costs will increase for Canadians, adding up to more than $2,500 annually for the average family.
- It will be especially painful for people in northern communities who already pay dearly for home heating, vehicle fuel and groceries including milk.
- A carbon tax tilts the economic playing field in favour of our competitors that don’t pay carbon taxes.
- Canada is already in an economic downturn and this will cause a further weakening of our economy when we can least afford it.
- Liberals say it’ll create jobs. Yeah right. Maybe for tax collectors and solar panel salespeople but not for other sectors.
- Canadians weren’t crying out for a carbon tax. In oil and gas producing provinces, such as Alberta and Saskatchewan, the majority of people are opposed to a carbon tax.
- The tax will have a negligible effect on reducing greenhouse gases on the planet.
- While Canadian prosperity would suffer under a tax on carbon, countries like China would see an economic boom spurred by continued construction of greenhouse gas producing coal-fired power plants.
- Canada produces just .001 of greenhouse gases. Even if we were to meet our carbon reduction targets as hoped by 2030, all of our efforts and sacrifices would be nullified if the world’s biggest greenhouse gas emitters continue to increase their emissions.
- Taxing Canadians won’t reduce greenhouse gas emissions. There are efficient solutions to battling climate change including investing in carbon capture and storage projects, offering Canadians incentives to reduce their carbon footprint and encouraging industries to come up with cleaner technologies.
What are your thoughts on this issue? I want to hear them. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
In the short time since I introduced Bill C-306, I’m honoured to have received messages of support from Canadian groups, Tatar leaders and individuals from across the country and abroad.
Here’s a copy of the support letters that I have received from:
- Rustem Irsay – President of the Canadian Association of Crimean Tatars;
- Orest Steciw – National President of the League of Ukrainian Canadians;
- Mustafa Jemilev – Commissioner of the President of Ukraine for the Affairs of Crimean Tatars;
- and Refat Chubarov – People’s Deputy of Ukraine Chair of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People.
Visit here to read the full text of Bill C-306: http://www.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Publication.aspx?Language=E&Mode=1&DocId=8446568
My colleague, Rachel Harder and I hosted a Youth Jobs Roundtable at NAIT in Edmonton.
We got important feedback from students and young professionals on today’s job climate. We heard some horror stories about how the economy is hurting youth employment opportunities. But there were also some solid solutions suggested by our roundtable participants including: urging governments to support more paid internships, controlling federal spending and pushing to see carbon taxes stopped.
Thanks to all the participants. Rachel and I really value your opinions and solutions.
Alberta is facing some of the highest job losses in Canada but the Liberal government has not put forward a jobs plan.
Our Conservative caucus launched the Alberta Jobs Taskforce to address the growing jobs crisis in Alberta. We want to hear from everyday Albertans like you. Share your story here.