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Legislative Report
(12 January 2011)

Record High Employment

As the people of Saskatchewan settle into 2011, we continue to hear more good news about our province’s economy. Our government recently learned that record high employment for the month of December meant that Saskatchewan closed 2010 with the second lowest unemployment rate in Canada. December also marked our province’s 11th straight month of year-over-year employment growth and, importantly, we saw continued employment growth for First Nations and Métis people. Plus, our seasonally adjusted unemployment rate of 5.5 per cent is well below the national average of 7.5 per cent. It’s no surprise that more job seekers than ever are exploring career opportunities on SaskJobs.ca. The site hosted a record 8.9 million visits in 2010 while posting more than 111,000 jobs from employers across the province. Looking forward, with eight independent economic forecasters calling for Saskatchewan to lead the country in economic growth, there are many reasons to be optimistic.

Improved Health Services

Beginning in May, some patients will receive selected diagnostic services more quickly and wait lists for those services will be reduced. The Regina Qu’Appelle Health Region has awarded a 32-month contract for the provision of computed tomography (CT) services to Radiology Associates of Regina. Services provided will include head, neck, abdominal, chest, pelvic and spinal CT scans. This initiative will address the very immediate need to improve access to this key diagnostic imaging service in southern Saskatchewan. Timely diagnosis is essential to our efforts of putting patients first and providing sooner, safer and smarter surgical care.

Negative Attack Ads

Negative attack ads are a fact of life in politics, but you, the taxpayer, shouldn’t be paying for them. Our government has asked the NDP to support a change to the rules governing MLA expense allowances to prevent your money from being used for negative attack ads. Many other provinces already have rules in place that do not allow using taxpayer’s money to fund negative political ads.

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