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Premier hints at new school for Grande Prairie

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During her recent visit to the area Rachel Notley hinted there could be a new school in the budget that will be tabled this week. She was in Grande Prairie to speak to the CUPE convention. Making her the first sitting Premier to do so.

While in town she also made a stop at Tradesman Enterprises where she talked about the role the region has had during the economic recovery. Notley says the area will play a major part in the continued recovery which makes it worth investing in.

“We do know that Grande Prairie is the youngest city, pretty much, in the province.There is a tremendous growth and the city has been looking for another school. I certainly urge folks in Grande Prairie to watch the budget on Thursday.”

The Premier offered no details on whether the school would be public or catholic or where it might be located. This new school tease comes on the heels of the announcement the province has taken the first steps towards GPRC becoming a degree granting institution. Notley says they hope the access to an expanded work force and added investment in the area will attract industry.

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“We know first of all of course, [again] Grande Prairie has a very young and educated work force and so that is good. We know of course that the oil and gas reserves in and around this area are very, very rich. And we know that it’s well positioned to ship westward. So these things are all critical.”

Tradesmen Enterprise’s VP of Business Development Greg Mould says that positive investment in local talent helps local business feel confident in their futures and to diversify talent.

“We’re continuing to look at new projects right across all of Alberta and not try to lock ourselves in to one particular industry. So it’s of benefit for government to be able to come in and to be able to help fund some of these projects. Also we’re seeing the trickle down effect and I think we’re going to see that move forward at a rapid rate here over the next few months as ew kick off our new projects.”

The focus for the upcoming budget according to Notley is continuing the economic recovery, maintaining stability and predictability with public services and diversification.

Finance Minister Joe Ceci will table the budget Thursday at the legislature. At a recent economic update Ceci said the forecast deficit was $9.1 billion, down from last year’s estimate of $10.4 billion.

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