A number of ministers have been moved to new jobs and some have been demoted in a cabinet shuffle announced late Friday afternoon by Alberta Premier Alison Redford.
Mostly notably, Thomas Lukaszuk is no longer deputy premier.
That job will now be filled by former Human Services Minister Dave Hancock, who is also the new minister of Innovation and Advanced Education.
Lukaszuk is now in charge of the new ministry of Jobs, Skills and Training.
Diana McQueen has been moved from Environment and Sustainable Resource Development to the Energy portfolio.
Former energy minister Ken Hughes is now minister of Municipal Affairs. Doug Griffiths have been moved from Municipal Affairs to Service Alberta.
Ric McIver was moved from Transportation to Infrastructure. Manmeet Bhullar takes over from Hancock as Human Services Minister.
Robin Campbell takes over from McQueen in Environment and Sustainable Resource Development.
Some ministers are staying in their portfolios: Fred Horne in Health, Jonathan Denis in Justice and Solicitor General, Jeff Johnston in Education, Doug Horner in Treasury Board and Finance, Heather Klimchuk in Culture, Cal Dallas in International and Intergovernmental Relations and Richard Starke in Tourism, Parks and Recreation.
Opposition criticizes shuffle
Following the release of the cabinet shuffle, Alberta New Democrat leader Brian Mason spoke out against the changes, saying taxpayers should not be forced to pay for Redford’s expanding cabinet.
Mason suggested the addition of several new positions within the cabinet was Redford’s attempt to manage caucus discontent.
“Handing out cabinet positions like candy is no way to manage a government,” he said. “The premier is attempting to buy the loyalty of her fractured caucus with money that should be going to health care and education. Overall we are seeing a bloated, expensive cabinet, appointed for political expediency rather than merit.
Mason also noted that more than half of Redford’s caucus has a specific portfolio and will get extra pay.
Wildrose Leader Danielle Smith also criticized the size of the new cabinet.
Smith said she was disappointed that several ministers would be continuing in their roles despite strong criticism – particularly in the financial and health portfolios.
“A cabinet shuffle is an opportunity to change direction and signify a new vision. Unfortunately for Albertans, Premier Redford has decided to stick with the status quo on the major issues we face as a province.
“The Premier has decided to stick with her Finance Minister, despite presiding over a budget that he can’t balance, and her Health Minister, despite running system that he can’t fix.”
Italics - indicates a position that has changed hands
* - indicates a newly created position
PremierPresident of Executive Council
Deputy PremierMinister of Innovation & Advanced Education
President of Treasury BoardMinister of Finance
|Thomas Lukaszuk||Minister of Jobs, Skills, Training and Labour*|
|Cal Dallas||Minister of International and Intergovernmental Relations|
|Diana McQueen||Minister of Energy|
|Fred Horne||Minister of Health|
|Ken Hughes||Minister of Municipal Affairs|
Minister of EducationMinisterial Liaison to the Canadian Forces
Minister of Agriculture and Rural DevelopmentDeputy House Leader
Minister of Justice & Solicitor GeneralDeputy House Leader
|Doug Griffiths||Minister of Service Alberta|
Minister of Environment & Sustainable Resource DevelopmentGovernment House Leader
|Heather Klimchuk||Minister of Culture|
Minister of Aboriginal RelationsDeputy House Leader
|Manmeet Bhullar||Minister of Human Services|
|Wayne Drysdale||Minister of Transportation|
|Ric McIver||Minister of Infrastructure|
|Richard Starke||Minister of Tourism, Parks, & Recreation|
International and Intergovernmental Relations (Asia)
Recovery & Reconstruction for South West Alberta
Recovery & Reconstruction for South East Alberta
Recovery & Reconstruction for High River
Accountability Transparency and Transformation
Family and Community Safety
|Donna Kennedy-Glans||Electricity and Renewable Energy*|
|Naresh Bhardwaj||Persons with Disabilities|