Campus, dialysis could face chopping block

UCP candidate Rehn says his government would first review plans

Richard Froese
South Peace News

A new college campus and dialysis for High Prairie could be scrapped by a UCP government.

It’s what incumbent New Democrat candidate Danielle Larivee fears.

She voiced her opinion at an all-candidates forum April 3 in High Prairie for the provincial election.

All four Lesser Slave Lake candidates took part in the forum at the Gordon Buchanan Recreation Centre in front of about 130 people.

United Conservative Party candidate Pat Rehn did not state a position about funding for the projects announced by the NDP government.

“My [opponent] couldn’t commit to say it would continue the funding,” Larivee says.

“It concerns me that under another party, it won’t happen.”

One resident asked Rehn if he would support the funding for a new consolidated campus for Northern Lakes College and dialysis for High Prairie Health Complex.

Rehn explained the UCP plan is to evaluate funding and management for health care and conduct a performance review in the first few months in power.

“We’re getting inefficiencies from the NDP,” Rehn says.

Larivee fears both projects will die under the UCP.

“I know what will happen if they get in, they’ll kill it,” Larivee says.

“He can’t say these capital projects will happen.”

She adds the NDP government addressed local issues.

“A new college campus was needed and people were crying out for dialysis,” Larivee says.

The government announced funding of $21.6 million for a consolidated campus on March 27, 2017.

Funding of $5.2 million for a dialysis clinic in High Prairie was announced Feb. 6. The clinic is scheduled to open in 2020 to provide services to a maximum of 12 patients weekly.

Alberta Party candidate Vincent Rain and Suzette Powder of the Alberta Independence Party also took part in the forum.

Election day in Alberta is April 16.

Advance polls are open April 9-13.

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