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News release

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April 23, 2013

Premier Redford remains focused on building Alberta

Premier Alison Redford issued the following statement today on the anniversary of the April 23, 2012 provincial election. A year ago today, I was privileged and humbled by the confidence the people of Alberta placed in me and our party to deliver on our plan to build Alberta. Despite a $6 billion hit to our revenues this year because of the bitumen bubble where Albertans are not getting the price we should for our resources Im proud of what weve managed to accomplish so far. Weve had to make tough, but necessary decisions to protect Albertas gains, and well remain focused on building for the future so Alberta remains the greatest province, in the greatest country on the planet, and the bright, confident place we love to call home. - 30 -

Making Progress. Keeping Our Commitments.

Building Alberta Building infrastructure: $5.2 billion in Budget 2013 to keep building modern health facilities, quality schools, safe highways and other important infrastructure, including the accelerated twinning of Highway 63. Nearly $500 million over three years is budgeted for post-secondary capital projects. Increased Health and Education Funding: Health care spending increased by 3%; Education increased by 3.2% in Budget 2013. $107 million in education funding was restored on Oct 12, 2011, five days after being sworn in. Family Care Clinics: Budget 2013 includes $235 million to add new family care clinics and support primary care networks. Insulin pump therapy program: Created in Budget 2013 for eligible Albertans with type 1 diabetes. PharmaCare: Budget 2013 creates a new PharmaCare program that will provide access to drug and supplemental health benefit coverage to all Albertans. Lower prescription costs: beginning May 1, Albertans will pay the lowest price in Canada for prescription drugs. New Education Act: received Royal Assent on Dec. 10, 2012.

New schools: Budget 2013 includes $500 million as the first step in building 50 new schools and 70 school modernizations. Tuition freeze: rates for the 2013-14 academic year have been frozen. Canadas toughest expense policy: implemented on October 1, 2012 requiring disclosure of travel, accommodation, meals and hospitality expenses. Social Policy Framework: launched on February 28, 2013 and called by observers the most in-depth government guide to social policy in 30 years. PTSD presumptive coverage for first responders: The Workers Compensation Amendment Act, 2012 received Royal Assent on Dec. 10, 2012. Protecting vulnerable Albertans: including increased funding to AISH, Persons with Developmental Disabilities, homelessness programs and child intervention programs. Whistleblower Legislation: Public Interest Disclosure (Whistleblower) legislation received Royal Assent on Dec. 10, 2012. Seniors Property Tax Deferral Program: included in Budget 2013, will allow eligible seniors to defer all or part of their property taxes through a low-interest home equity loan. Property Rights: Property Rights Advocate Office opens in Lethbridge on February 6, 2013. The Electric Utilities Amendment Act, 2012 ensures that all future transmission line projects require complete review and approval by the Alberta Utilities Commission received Royal Assent on Dec. 10, 2012. Stable Municipal Funding: Despite the bitumen bubble, funding for the Municipal Sustainability Initiative (MSI) was protected in Budget 2013. $200 million was also allocated for GreenTRIP, to reduce traffic congestion and greenhouse gas emissions and increase public transit access. Building Savings Savings strategy: focused plan to save a portion of our resource revenues in the Alberta Heritage Savings Trust Fund for the first time in 25 years. Labour stability: Landmark agreements with doctors and teachers include salary freezes for the first three years and will provide long-term stability in health care and education. Hold the line on spending: Budget 2013 holds overall spending increases to zero well below the expected population plus inflation rate of 4.3%. Results-based budgeting: review of 800 government programs and services accelerated. MLA pay: has been reduced by 8%, and committee pay, transition allowances and the tax free allowance were eliminated. Leading by example: management salary freeze and reduction of the number of public sector managers by 10% over three years to save taxpayers $54 million. No provincial sales tax or tax increases: Alberta has the most competitive tax system in North America and the lowest overall taxes in the country with the lowest fuel tax among provinces, no health premium, no payroll tax, no capital tax and no provincial sales tax.

Building Markets Advocating Alberta's interests: Premier has been to Washington four times to tell our story directly to those who will make the critical decisions about market access. Building bridges: Envoys to Washington and Ottawa appointed February 1, 2013. Asia Advisory Council launched on June 12, 2012 as part of a larger strategy to grow and strengthen relations with the crucial Asian market. International offices: Budget 2013 included an additional $5 million to strengthen Albertas presence and grow and diversify markets in Asia, the U.S. and Europe. Canadian Energy Strategy: Leading the development of a Canadian Energy Strategy including working with Quebec sharing energy expertise and address and examining how Eastern Canada refineries and economies can benefit from taking Alberta oil. Single Regulator: the Responsible Energy Development Act received Royal Assent on Dec. 10, 2012. Environmental Monitoring: the new Environmental Monitoring Agency will be established this year. Budget 2013 announced over $100 million will be provided over the next two years.

Media inquiries may be directed to: Neala Barton Office of the Premier Cell: 587-991-8935 neala.barton@gov.ab.ca @ABPremierComms Facebook.com/PremierRedford
To call toll-free within Alberta dial 310-0000.