Responsible Resource Development
I will prioritize policies that create a value-added natural resource economy that will develop our local economy, create jobs and keep people here in the NWT.
- Create a comprehensive resource development strategy to manage competing resource priorities to ensure projects go ahead where they make sense and maximize economic benefits to local and regional economies, while mitigating potential liabilities.
- Invest all resource royalties into the NWT Heritage Fund to generate stronger dividend returns for the future needs of Northerners. For example, an investment of $100 million will yield $125 million in 25 years and $589 million in 50 years. Within the first 5 years the total return on investment will be nearly $12 million available for immediate investment in the NWT.
- Approve land use plans in all settlement regions to provide regulatory certainty for private sector investment. Proper land use plans will take the guessing out of resource exploration and clearly define available areas for resource development.
- Scrap the controversial Conservation Areas Action Plan and return to consultations with industry, Aboriginal governments, and members of public on the best way forward for conservation in the NWT.
- Enhance the NWT Mining Incentive Program by $600,000 to a total of $1 million and provide new funding of up to 50 per cent of advanced exploration stages of mineral project development.
- Ensure that taxpayers are not stuck with the cost of cleaning up remote resource development sites by securing adequate financial assurance for remediation and reclamation after a site is closed.
- Prioritize the construction of an all-weather road into the mineral rich Slave Geological Province
- Promote the development of infrastructure that supports resource development and leaves a legacy that supports the transportation needs of Northerners and connects our communities.
- Invest in secondary industries derived from resource extraction that create jobs in the manufacturing and processing sectors.
- Work with territories, provinces and the federal government on a national strategic assessment of hydraulic fracturing to provide certainty to both industry and communities about the environmental and economic impacts. This is a divisive issue in our communities and an assessment will ensure that all the facts are available for consideration before a decision is made on hydraulic fracturing in the NWT.
Private Sector Lead Economy
I will prioritize policies that reduce the dependence of our communities on government jobs, create economic growth and increase opportunities for Northern businesses.
- Enhance available Support for Entrepreneurs and Economic Development (SEED) funding by $1.2 million to a total of $5 million. This will investment will create jobs, expand local economies and provide additional investment in entrepreneurs and small businesses.
- Cut the small business tax rate by 1%, making the NWT the most tax competitive jurisdiction in Canada’s North.
- Introduce a Northwest Territories Business Investment Tax Credit worth up to 25 per cent of the value of an investment in NWT companies to a maximum of $25,000 a year. This will create jobs and promote economic growth and expansion in the NWT by reducing financial risk for investors in NWT companies.
- Encourage Northern businesses to become involved in entrepreneurship programs in elementary and secondary schools.
Tourism and Culture
I will prioritize policies that expand the capacity of the tourism industry and allow the NWT to realize its full potential as one of the fastest growing tourist destinations in North America.
- Increase available funding to $1 million for tourism infrastructure development, supporting the growth of the tourism industry and making the NWT an even more attractive place to visit.
- $100,000 for Operator Insurance Assistance funding of to offset the high costs of commercial insurance for tourism operators. Supporting a wide range of independent tourism operators will create new jobs and expand tourism opportunities across the NWT.
- $250,000 for Community Museum Operating Grants. Museums contribute to the economic well-being of their communities as employers and tourist attractions. Their support also strengthens the role in their communities as custodians and interpreters of the NWT’s irreplaceable heritage collections.
- Work with the Northern Arts and Cultural Centre, the private sector and partner organizations to invest in a new standalone performing arts facility that will support Northern, national and international performers and arts programs throughout the NWT.
- Support the continued development of territorial parks and campgrounds and promote a conservation economy through effective environmental stewardship and wildlife management.
I will prioritize policies that invest in the growth of the knowledge sector, an important driver of productivity and economic growth that will equip Northerners with the tools for the jobs of tomorrow.
- A 10-year strategic plan to grow Aurora College into a full polytechnic so that Northerners can learn a trade without leaving the North, along with the benefits of a service economy in campus communities. This plan will include the construction of a new campus facility in Yellowknife with full accommodations for students and modern research and classroom technologies.
- Create a Research and Development Tax Credit to encourage innovation and competitiveness in the private sector and make use of unique Northern research opportunities.
- Amend legislation to allow funding for made-in-the-North academic institutions such as Dechinta University and Collège Nordique.
- New funding to support a skilled trades and entrepreneurship program
- Improve the flexibility for Student Financial Assistance program policies to ensure that no Northern students are left out of necessary funding to support their continued education.
Energy and Environment
I will prioritize policies that take action on the high cost of energy and promote the protection of our environment through clean energy technologies and energy efficiency incentives for homeowners and businesses.
- Enhance funding for energy efficiency incentives and alternate energy technologies available to homeowners. These programs will be expanded to cover more of the cost to homeowners for the installation of appliances and energy systems, lowering the cost of power over time and reducing carbon emissions.
- Reduce the cost of power by leveraging hydro generated electricity with clean energy generation to offset low water levels and maximise hydro efficiency.
- Undertake an energy audit of government owned facilities and undertake energy efficient retrofits to improve efficiency and lower operating costs.
- Installation of co-generation energy systems that provide both heat and power in communities dependent on diesel generation.
Safer, Healthier Communities
I will prioritize policies that invest in the infrastructure needs of Yellowknife and take action on poverty, homelessness and addictions in our communities.
- Close the funding gap for our communities by investing an additional $25 million over 4 years in municipal infrastructure. This investment will create jobs and support healthy, well-maintained and vibrant communities that will encourage people to come and stay in the North.
- A $2 million Territorial Treatment Centre in Yellowknife with clinically based and culturally appropriate residential treatment programs to address the addictions and mental health needs of Northerners.
- Increased funding of $400,000 to the Housing First Initiative in Yellowknife and partner with the federal government, NGOs and private sector to implement immediate solutions to homelessness in our communities.
- Pilot a Wellness Navigator Program that serves as a single point of entry for residents in need of support from multiple programs and agencies.
Transparency and Accountability
I will prioritize policies that government open-by-default and protect the public’s right to information for the next legislative assembly.
- Make all committee hearings public by default, including the territorial leadership committee that selects Premier and Cabinet.
- Strengthen the review powers of the Conflict of Interest Commissioner to ensure proper oversight and timely publication of MLA expenses.
- Strengthen Access to Information legislation and introduce whistleblower protection legislation for public servants.
- Introduce a motion that will have all MLAs expenses made public and posted online.
- As a further commitment to my plan, if elected I will post all of my expenses online regardless of the outcome of any legislative measures to improve transparency.
I will prioritize policies that strengthen our democracy and reduce barriers to the participation of Northerners in our democracy.
- Form a special committee on democratic reform that will study ways to improve our democracy in full consultation with NWT residents from every community
- Lower the residency requirement for voters from the current 1 year to the national average of 6 months
- Loosen political and volunteer restrictions of public servants in non-restricted government positions to allow their full participation in the political process