Calgary

Calgary UCP MLAs to meet with city council

Calgary's city councillors will sit down for breakfast next Friday with UCP MLAs from the city for the first time since the provincial election — but Premier Jason Kenney won't be among them.
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney, left, will not be among those meeting Calgary's city council — including Mayor Naheed Nenshi, right — next week. (Canadian Press)

Calgary's city councillors will sit down for breakfast next Friday with UCP MLAs from the city for the first time since the provincial election — but Premier Jason Kenney won't be among them.

Councillors originally received an invitation telling them the guests would include Premier Jason Kenney and some of his cabinet ministers. On Friday morning, the premier's office said Kenney would not be attending the meeting.

It would have been the first time that Kenney met Calgary city council, despite meeting with Edmonton's mayor already and travelling out of province to meet other premiers and the prime minister.

It's a meeting Ward 11 Coun. Jeromy Farkas calls "overdue" though he admits aligning schedules can be difficult.

"I'm really pleased to see both sides making this a priority right now," said Farkas. The councillor also said these meetings do not happen frequently so he hopes connections between local and provincial politicians grow.

Building relationships "important"

That's echoed by Ward 5 Coun. George Chahal, who said the meeting will allow Calgary's elected officials to build relationships with their political counterparts at the provincial level — something he called "extremely important."

"It's a good opportunity to put names to faces on the provincial level and at the municipal level, for folks to know who we are," said Chahal.

The session is being described as more of a "get to know each other" session, as opposed to a meeting with a hard agenda.

Calgary city hall needs to get on board with this agenda of lowering taxes.- Ward 11 Coun. Jeromy Farkas

For Farkas, key issues to discuss include flood mitigation for Calgary and concerns over the safe consumption site at the Sheldon Chumir Centre. 

However, Farkas also wants to see Calgary's council begin to cooperate with the UCP government.

"Calgary city hall needs to get on board with this agenda of lowering taxes, cutting red tape for us all to be successful here in the city and the province," said Farkas.

With files from Scott Dippel

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