An NDP press release said Danielle Smith and the UCP are using $9 million dollars of taxpayer money to put towards her "war chest" and pre-election campaign,
Part of the supplementary supply bill that was introduced on Monday included $6.6 million of new funding for the Affordability Action Plan, this then comes on top of the $2.8 million that is already set for advertising to sell Budget 2023.
NDP Deputy Leader Sarah Hoffman explains this adds up to more than $9 million total of Albertans' taxpaying dollars solely for pre-election communications.
“This is Danielle Smith sticking it to hard working Albertans with the bill for her re-election campaign. Instead of addressing the chaos that they’ve caused in Alberta’s healthcare, or the harm that they have caused students, staff and families in Alberta’s schools, Danielle Smith and the UCP are using Alberta’s money to try and save their political skins.”
A separate NDP release added the UCP government in January and February of 2023 spent more than $4 million on advertising; around 6x more than the UCP under Kenney spent during the same time in 2022.
“Albertans deserve better than this. They deserve a government that is focused on what matters to them – healthcare, affordable living, a plan to create good-paying jobs and more. Instead, Smith is dead set on using Albertans' own money to run her election campaign.”
The NDP said Smith criticized the use of Albertans' money so close to a campaign when she was the opposition leader back in 2012.
“You should not be able to use taxpayers' dollars for blatant partisan advertising in advance of an election,” Smith said on March 7, 2012, while leader of the Wildrose official opposition.
Wildrose house leader at the time and currently Executive Director in charge of policy in the Premier’s office Rob Anderson questioned the Conservatives' use of taxpayer money as their own “piggy bank.”
Strathmore Now reached out to the UCP Minister of Finance Travis Toews's office for comment yesterday and this morning but received no response.
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