Danielle Smith talks to the media as she and fellow MLA's attend their first caucus retreat in Chestermere, Alberta on July 17, 2012.
Credits: STUART DRYDEN/QMI AGENCY
CALGARY - The Wildrose Party will bring back unresolved issues on budget, illegal donations, unethical awarding of contracts and health care problems when legislature resumes in the fall.
The official opposition caucus held its first retreat in Chestermere, Alta., on Tuesday to start preparing for the fall sitting of the Alberta legislature.
Wildrose Leader Danielle Smith said the Tories didn't solve any of the problems they faced by having an election and her party will continue to press the government to fix those concerns.
"We still have a budget that they can't balance and they're being dishonest about it, quite frankly," she told reporters during a break from the meeting with her caucus.
"They claim that it's almost balanced and yet they had to borrow $3 billion from our savings fund to make their numbers work."
Smith said the health care system is "clearly in disarray" as evidenced by closing down of facilities without giving any notice to patients and staff.
"We also have major ethics concerns related to the illegal donations that the party is receiving, related to the contract given to Ms. Redford's ex-husband's law firm on the tobacco law suit."
Alberta is suing tobacco companies and part of the legal work has been given to Jensen, Shawa, Solomon, Duguid, Hawkes, a firm that includes partner Robert Hawkes, who is Redford's former husband and was the leader of her transition team when she was elected leader of the Tories.
On the oil pipeline front, Smith said the industry and Alberta have up to this point failed to get a champion in BC to advocate for the much needed projects such as the Northern Gateway.
"I think the reality of that means that we have to be open to having some discussions about what would be an option that they would support," Smith said.
"We need a west coast option."
The Wildrose leader is also advocating for a targeted review of the province's pipeline system.
She said older pipelines and those crossing over waterways need to be looked at to avoid any more spills such as the recent one on Red Deer River.