NDP leader Rachel Notley sat down with the Calgary Chamber of Commerce on Friday, delivering a message of jobs as well as higher taxes for corporations and high-income Albertans.
"We can maintain a good working relationship with business in Alberta," said Notley. "We know that they drive the economy, we know we need to diversify our economy, and at the end of the day jobs are critical."
Her meeting at the chamber coincides with some polls showing her party flirting with the possibility of a majority government, marking a considerable shift in the province.
Chamber spokesperson Justin Smith says they are pleased Notley is on board with one of their policy positions — providing tax credits to investors in qualifying small businesses — but not everyone was feeling so optimistic.
Local businessman John Cassels, speaking in the shadow of Bankers Hall in downtown Calgary, says he's concerned about the NDP's strong ties to unions, which he believes represent one of the biggest threats to the provincial economy.
"No one seems to be willing to tackle the issue straight up," he said.
Notley is the first party leader to meet with the chamber, but the business organization hopes to sit down with the leaders of all parties before the May 5 election.