This Week In Alberta August 4, 2023

This Week

4 new mandate letters: As of last week, mandate letters for eighteen ministries were released. This week, the Premier issued a further four letters outlining the priorities of the government. These include mandate letters for the following ministers: 

$45 million for hydrogen innovation: In conjunction with Alberta’s Hydrogen Roadmap, the province announced two hydrogen funding competitions through the Alberta Innovates’ Hydrogen Centre of Excellence and Emissions Reduction Alberta (ERA). The $45 million in funding supports a wide range of applicants to explore innovative technologies that are currently not commercially available. Applicants can submit a single proposal to apply to the two funding streams. The deadline for the ERA competition is Sept 22, and the deadline for the Alberta Innovates competition is Sept 26. 
6-month pause on new renewable electricity generation projects: Alberta’s government announced they would pause approvals of new renewable electricity generation projects over one megawatt for the next six months. The decision was in response to concerns from the Alberta Utilities Commission (AUC) regarding the rapid pace of renewables development. The pause will be accompanied by an inquiry that will inform future government policy decisions on the economic, orderly, and efficient development of electrical generation in Alberta. 
Increasing access to lab services: Routine lab tests, like blood work, are facing constant delays. To ensure better access to lab testing, the government announced that, in addition to DynaLife, Alberta Precision Laboratories would offer more community lab appointments. For Calgary, this represents a 25% increase in lab services.
Streamlining delivery of mental health services: In the past, a lack of coordination has led to inconsistent funding and outcomes for those accessing mental health and addiction services. To ensure a consistent and effective approach to these services across Alberta, the government directed AHS to consolidate its mental health and addiction programs, services, and operations under the existing AHS Provincial Addiction and Mental Health program.

What’s Next

Legislative calendar: MLAs will return to the Legislature on October 30 for the Speech from the Throne. 
UCP AGM: The United Conservative Party will be holding their next AGM on November 3-4 in Calgary. 



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