May 28th, 2024

Alberta set next week to amend bill granting cabinet broad powers over municipalities

By The Canadian Press on May 3, 2024.

Alberta Premier Danielle Smith says next week she will amend a bill granting cabinet new powers to fire local councillors and overturn bylaws. Smith speaks to reporters on the sidelines of the Canada Strong and Free Network event in Ottawa, Friday, April 12, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Spencer Colby

EDMONTON – Alberta Premier Danielle Smith says changes will come next week to a bill granting cabinet broad power to fire local councillors and overturn bylaws.

Smith says the province is working on the language of the proposed law to clarify guardrails that don’t currently exist in the legislation.

The bill has met with a torrent of criticism from municipal leaders, who call it a dramatic and undemocratic overreach by Smith’s United Conservative government.

The proposed law gives cabinet the power to fire a councillor for anything cabinet deems to be in the public interest.

The province has promised to consult local leaders on the proposed amendments.

Alberta Municipalities — the organization that represents towns, cities and villages — welcomes the changes but says the consultation should have happened before the bill was even introduced.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 3, 2024.

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