Trudeau government gives Alberta over $850M during UCP administration

For nearly the entire time he’s been in office, Jason Kenney has insisted that the federal government hasn’t done enough to help Alberta.

For nearly the entire time he has been in office, Alberta premier Jason Kenney has insisted that the federal government hasn’t been doing enough to help Alberta.

During a lunchtime reception in Ottawa last December. At the Calgary airport this past March. In a news conference last month with premiers from Manitoba, Ontario, and Québec. Heck, he was doing it even before he was elected.

Recently, this insistence prompted me to search the federal government news archives to find out how much Ottawa has actually contributed to Alberta projects since the UCP took power in April 2019.

So, I spent hours upon hours pouring through 5,205 news releases trying to find Alberta projects the federal government committed funds to.

I found 75 projects, and collectively, they added up to over $850 million that Justin Trudeau and the federal Liberals have committed to Alberta in the year and a half since the UCP were elected.

Here there are.

Mountain Pine Beetle8 Oct 2020$60.0
Education infrastructure1 Oct 2020$21.9
Cactus Corridor Economic Development25 Sep 2020$1.5
Child care22 Sep 2020$72.0
Clean start-ups16 Sep 2020$8.2
Mental health funding (Africa Centre)10 Sep 2020$0.4
Smart Sustainable Resilient Infrastructure4 Sep 2020$3.0
Regional Relief and Recovery Fund3 Sep 2020$79.0
Northern Alberta infrastructure2 Sep 2020$87.7
National Defence contract27 Aug 2020$9.2
Central Alberta infrastructure25 Aug 2020$82.3
Calgary biomass project25 Aug 2020$2.0
Food Processing Development Centre12 Aug 2020$2.6
Central Alberta infrastructure11 Aug 2020$19.2
Taber Irrigation District6 Aug 2020$0.2
Southern Alberta infrastructure4 Aug 2020$16.7
Eastern Irrigation District31 Jul 2020$0.1
Regional Relief and Recovery Fund28 Jul 2020$48.3
Child care23 Jul 2020$45.4
Alberta Women Entrepreneurs15 Jul 2020$2.1
Municipal Asset Management Program13 Jul 2020$0.1
Canadian Emissions Reduction Innovation7 Jul 2020$6.0
Beekeepers5 Jun 2020$1.0
Efficient Grain Dryer Program10 Feb 2020$2.0
University of Calgary upgrades17 Dec 2019$8.5
Canadian Experiences Fund9 Sep 2019$2.9
Multicultural funding6 Sep 2019$2.3
Northern Alberta internet6 Sep 2019$4.9
Edmonton area businesses5 Sep 2019$27.1
Southern Alberta businesses5 Sep 2019$38.0
Canada Coal Transition Initiative3 Sep 2019$3.6
Green Coal Mine Reclamation Project30 Aug 2019$3.8
Rural Smart Grid30 Aug 2019$2.2
Lethbridge food bank30 Aug 2019$0.1
Women Entrepreneurship Strategy30 Aug 2019$3.3
Community and Creative Expression29 Aug 2019$1.5
Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital Foundation29 Aug 2019$1.8
Steel and aluminum29 Aug 2019$5.7
Edmonton Science Centre expansion28 Aug 2019$8.7
Francis Winspear Centre for Music27 Aug 2019$18.1
Dewatering technology26 Aug 2019$2.0
Forty Mile Rail Transload Facility26 Aug 2019$4.2
47 arts & culture organizations25 Aug 2019$4.0
Geothermal facility23 Aug 2019$25.4
Calgary interpretive centre23 Aug 2019$2.0
AATC Incubator23 Aug 2019$1.5
Freshwater conservation16 Aug 2019$1.8
Linear Motion Technologies15 Aug 2019$2.1
Olds College Smart Farm13 Aug 2019$1.9
Reynolds-Alberta Museum9 Aug 2019$12.1
Rural internet access9 Aug 2019$3.6
U of C opioid agonist therapy30 Jul 2019$0.7
Women entrepreneurs22 Jul 2019$3.2
Calgary Trade Accelerator22 Jul 2019$0.9
U of A health research19 Jul 2019$1.6
Alberta Ecotrust Foundation – Calgary19 Jul 2019$22.0
Alberta Ecotrust Foundation – Edmonton18 Jul 2019$22.0
Rural internet access10 Jul 2019$0.5
Vivo Play Project6 Jul 2019$1.4
Apollo Machine and Welding3 Jul 2019$0.4
Environmental Damages Fund3 Jul 2019$0.9
Canada Coal Transition Initiative29 Jun 2019$4.5
Digital Literacy Exchange Program27 Jun 2019$1.3
Sundance Housing Co-operative24 May 2019$2.5
Women Building Futures Society23 May 2019$2.5
Calgary area women’s organizations23 May 2019$3.4
Edmonton area women’s organizations23 May 2019$4.1
Airport infrastructure15 May 2019$0.3
MEG Energy Corporation8 May 2019$8.0
Women Entrepreneurship Fund – Calgary4 May 2019$0.9
Women Entrepreneurship Fund – Edmonton4 May 2019$1.2
Edmonton Trade Accelerator Program4 May 2019$1.3
Eavor Technologies geothermal project25 Apr 2019$6.7
Centre for Grid Innovation25 Apr 2019$1.9
University of Lethbridge24 Apr 2019$1.6
In millions

Now, keep in mind that this $857.8 million isn’t all the federal government has promised Alberta. It doesn’t include funding that they promised for the country as a whole but that Alberta will be able to participate in. For example, the more than 80 Alberta organizations who were part of hundreds of organizations to received a combined $50 million to support women and children fleeing violence.

It also doesn’t include the $244 million in infrastructure funding from the Gas Tax Fund for 347 Alberta communities during the 2020–2021 fiscal year. Or the $472.8 million from the same fund last year.

Nor does it include the $1.72 billion promised to BC, Alberta, and Saskatchewan this past April to clean up orphan oil and gas wells.

Finally, it doesn’t include the amounts Alberta receives in annual federal transfer payments, such as $9.07 billion we received last year and the $9.96 billion we should be receiving this year.

If we did include all that, then Alberta has received—or has been promised to receive—over $20 billion since the UCP were elected.

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By Kim Siever

Kim Siever is an independent journalist based in Lethbridge, Alberta. He writes daily news stories, focusing on politics and labour.

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