COLUMN: Victoria Jurgens — July 29, 2014

Victoria Jurgens
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Saskatchewan’s economy is strong, and that activity is translating into more revenue for municipalities.  Our government recently announced that communities will receive more through Municipal Revenue Sharing, a program based on one percentage point of the PST.  Due to an increase in Provincial Sales Tax revenue, our government will provide an additional $8.3 million in the 2015-16 budget year.

Our government’s Municipal Revenue Sharing program provides steady, predictable funding that helps municipalities meet the challenges of growth and provide people with essential services.  Since its inception, it has provided municipalities with the highest amount of unconditional funding in our province’s history. 

In 2015-16, the City of Prince Albert will receive $7.5 million, a 150 per cent funding increase since 2007-08.  You can find current revenue sharing totals for communities across the province online at gr.gov.sk.ca/revenuesharing.

SLGA Grants Help Local Groups

Saskatchewan really is the best place to live, work, and especially play in Canada. That is because hundreds of organizations across the province offer recreational programs and other services to their communities.

In Prince Albert, our government helped to support many of these programs last quarter through Saskatchewan Liquor and Gaming Authority (SLGA) charitable gaming grants. Over $30,000 was distributed to 56 different groups in the city.

It is testament to the great community spirit we have in our city. Because of the hard work of the people of P.A., our citizens enjoy many opportunities and events organized through our local groups and agencies.

Improving Wildfire Safety & Efficiency

With wildfires on the minds of many Western Canadians this summer, my colleagues and I recently toured Saskatchewan’s Wildfire Centre north of Prince Albert.  Along with local media, we learned about our safe, efficient and automated fire detection towers as well as new technology that is helping to control and even prevent wildfires.

Our field of view is now much wider than before, communication has been streamlined, costs have been lowered and response times are quicker.  Aerial patrols, satellite imagery and public reports are also part of our overall detection system.

Our province currently has two crews, including specialists, planes and an Air Attack Officer, assisting with wildfires in the Northwest Territories.

Building Hope, Building Homes

I recently had the opportunity to visit the site of the Habitat for Humanity Women’s Build in Prince Albert.  It was fun and inspiring to work alongside dedicated volunteers who are motivated to help build a brighter future for a local family.  The Women’s Build project is a wonderful opportunity for us to show just how successful men and women are when we team up to achieve a common goal.

Our government is proud to partner with Habitat for Humanity in its mission to help Saskatchewan families put down roots knowing that their barriers to home-ownership are gone.  In the 2014-15 budget, we committed an additional $750,000 through Saskatchewan Housing Corporation to help build an additional 12 new Habitat for Humanity homes throughout Saskatchewan.

Since March 2009, our government has provided Habitat for Humanity with $7.85 million, helping to build dozens of homes for deserving families across the province.  This investment is truly a part of the Saskatchewan Plan for Growth and our desire to make this province the best place to live, work and raise a family.

Victoria Jurgens is the MLA for Prince Albert Northcote. Constituents are always welcome to contact her office by calling 306-922-4220.  You may also visit her website at http://mlajurgens.ca or email mlajurgens@sasktel.net.  Her office is located at 5A 598 15th St. E. across from Superstore.

 

Organizations: Saskatchewan Liquor and Gaming Authority, Habitat for Humanity, Saskatchewan Housing

Geographic location: Saskatchewan, Prince Albert, Canada Northwest Territories

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