Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Alberta Liberals on top of Electrical Sham

Sent: Tuesday, January 08, 2008 2:07 PM

Alberta Liberals Raise Questions about Department of Energy’s Million Dollar Man

Edmonton – Hugh MacDonald, Alberta Liberal Shadow Minister of Energy, says government documents show one of the architects of Bill 46 received almost $1.4 million from the provincial government over the last four years.

The provincial Blue Book, or list of provincial grants and payments, shows a numbered company owned by Kellan Fluckiger received $354,807 in the last year. Combined with the previous three years, the contracts add up to $1,358,645.

“The government isn’t sending Albertans a very good message about accountability and priorities,” says MacDonald. “Just recently, they attempted to reduce the Auditor General’s budget by $20,000. In the same fiscal year, they handed out a six figure contract to the architect of a democratically damaging piece of legislation.”

Fluckiger was one of those responsible for the government’s flawed Bill 46, which split the Energy and Utilities Board into two separate entities while failing to offer adequate protections for landowners. The bill was forced through the Legislature last fall. The government evoked closure on all three stages of the bill.

MacDonald notes that Fluckiger was originally hired by the Department of Energy to fix electricity deregulation, yet the system has reached a crisis since his hiring.

“Electricity deregulation has been one of the most expensive failures in Alberta’s history,” says MacDonald. “Alberta consumers continue to struggle to pay their monthly power bills, while the government is very generous to Mr. Fluckiger, paying him almost $1.4 million.”

Fluckiger is currently under a conflict of interest investigation by the Auditor General of Alberta. Fluckiger resigned from his position at Alberta Energy in October of 2007.

“Mr. Fluckiger has been collecting a very generous paycheque for years, for what results?” asks MacDonald. “The Minister of Energy owes it to Alberta taxpayers to immediately release the details of his role, his recent resignation, and whether he was paid a severance package on top of these expensive annual contracts.”


For more information contact:
Hugh MacDonald or Yolande Cole
Shadow Energy Minister Media Liaison
(780) 914-5270 (780) 446-6868
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