Future of RCMP and CPP in Alberta remain uncertain

Alberta government has its own plans for RCMP and CPP

Future of RCMP and CPP in Alberta remain uncertain

The Alberta government recently made moves concerning the platforms by the United Conservative Party of Alberta (UCP), an article from rabble.ca said. However, whether the decisions about them will be permanent remains to be unclear as there is still room for deliberation regarding both policies.

These platforms involve the replacement of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) with a new provincial police force and the province’s withdrawal from the Canadian Pension Plan (CPP) in favour of an Alberta pension plan.

Alberta and the RCMP

Justice minister Mickey Amery said in an article by CBC that the idea of the RCMP replacement is not completely dead as they are open for dialoguing with Albertans should they want to go through with the plan. This was in line with Premier Danielle Smith’s mandate letter to Amery regarding the goals and priorities he is tasked with along with his new position as justice minister.

“We are going to continue to listen to Albertans, to learn about their needs and their challenges and their concerns, and then bring that back to [cabinet] and to caucus for further contemplation,” said Amery.

However, the mandate did not include anything that involved the creation of a provincial police force.

Many polls have shown that Albertans do not support the idea of a new province-wide police force. The Rural Municipalities of Alberta (RMA) declared that they opposed the idea last year as its president, Paul McLauchlin said that there should be more focus put in bail reform or support for mental health and addictions.

New Democratic Party (NDP) justice critic Irfan Sabir had also expressed his desire to hear that the government will not pursue the establishment of a new provincial police force.

"It's a costly initiative ... and there is no evidence that it will help us address the issues that are facing the whole justice system," he said.

CPP’s future in Alberta

As the premier had dismissed talks regarding Alberta’s withdrawal from the CPP until the end of the election last May, Smith’s previous mandate in July told finance minister Nate Horner to discuss with Albertans if there should be a referendum held in order to establish an Alberta Pension Plan.

However, the idea of the Alberta Pension Plan is notably unpopular among Albertans with only 21% of 1,000 voting in favor of replacing the CPP in a leger poll conducted last May.

Political columnist Don Braid said in an article that Smith and the UCP had fully revived the idea of creating a provincial pension plan. Braid speculated that the UCP might consider giving the job of handling the funds of Alberta’s pension plan to the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board.

There are still a lot of questions regarding the plan that demands answers such as if Alberta pensioners will be forced into the provincial plan or be given an option to stay with the CPP should the plan come to fruition. With not enough information being released to the public, the future of the CPP in Alberta remains unclear.