Two things that need to be addressed

MLA Ron Orr feels central and rural Alberta are receiving unfair treatment from provincial government.

Ron Orr is the MLA for Lacombe-Ponoka.

Ron Orr is the MLA for Lacombe-Ponoka.


Central and rural Alberta do not receive fair and equal treatment from our provincial government. This has been going on for a long time, regardless of the political party in power. There are two reasons why.

First, there is a prevailing philosophy of government that bigger is better. They call it ‘economy of scale.’ The belief that the more centralized and top down managed anything is, the more effective and cost efficient it will be.

Everything in Alberta’s government is made to conform to this idea.

Health care is the worst offender. AHS is the largest employer in the province. Regional health boards were abolished for this reason. Managers proliferated. Central and rural Alberta health spending is significantly less than in urban areas.

Alberta Education believes this philosophy; so they have weakened the power of local school boards, and some in government would like to get rid of local boards all together.

Curriculum is not written by classroom teachers but in glass towers in Edmonton.

Small town schools get shut down. There should only be one massive school board because choice in education costs more but no consideration is given to how it benefits more.

The same philosophy reduces post-secondary education funding, denying polytech degree granting status to Red Deer College believing that it is ‘better’ if everyone just goes to one of the two big city universities.

The economy of scale argument is a failure. The larger and more complex the bureaucracy the less efficient the system becomes; the less human; the less adaptable; the less responsive and the less effective it is.

Witness our health care, the most expensive in the country with the worst results outside the urban mega-cities.

The second problem of the bureaucracy is that they have a strong urban bias.

It is not that they are deliberately prejudice against the non-urban areas, although that is the real life result, it is just that they are prejudice for the urban areas. Why? Because that is where most of them live. They have no idea what goes on outside of their urban existence.

Their perspective is entirely based on municipal boundaries. So they don’t think to give equal service to the small areas. Why would they since it doesn’t affect their lives?

These two agendas ‘economy of scale’ and an ‘urban bias’ are the drivers of discrimination against 48% of Albertans who do not live within the two large urban areas. In a democratic society, this is unjust.

This is why I continually speak up for Central Alberta’s health, education, seniors’ care and justice in the House, in committees and with the ministers personally.

You also must do your part; together we are stronger. Write your letters, make calls, learn how to hold an effective but peaceful rally. Conservative and rural people must put pressure on the government or forever remain second-class citizens of this great province that you all helped to build.

It is time to make our presence known and felt by those who seek to take away our rights and then ignore us.

They expect us to be lambs before coyotes. Don’t be. I need your support to make sure government knows you are Albertans too!

If you have any questions, concerns or would like to speak to me, feel free to contact my constituency office at 403-782-7725, or e-mail at or send mail to #101, 4892 46 St. in Lacombe. T4L 2B4.


Just Posted

The Government of Alberta identified 115 new COVID-19 cases Sunday, bringing the provincial total to 3,089.
(Black Press file photo)
Red Deer drops to 71 active cases of COVID-19

Province adds 127 new cases of the virus

Police officers and their dogs undergo training at the RCMP Police Dog Services training centre in Innisfail, Alta., on Wednesday, July 15, 2015. Mounties say they are searching for an armed and dangerous man near a provincial park in northern Alberta who is believed to have shot and killed a service dog during a police chase. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
RCMP search for armed man in northern Alberta after police dog shot and killed

Cpl. Deanna Fontaine says a police service dog named Jago was shot during the pursuit

Alberta now has 2,336 active cases of COVID-19, with 237 people in hospital, including 58 in intensive care. (Black Press file photo)
Red Deer down to 73 active cases of COVID-19, lowest since early November

The Central zone has 253 active cases of the virus

The Sylvan Lake Gulls show off the home jerseys (white) and their way jerseys at the Gulls Media Day on June 17, before the season opener. Following the media day, the team took to the field for their first practise. (Photo by Megan Roth/Sylvan Lake News)
Sylvan Lake Gulls ready to throw first pitch as construction continues

The Gulls inaugural season kicks off June 18 with a game against the Edmonton Prospects

Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship during a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday, May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada to welcome 45,000 refugees this year, says immigration minister

Canada plans to increase persons admitted from 23,500 to 45,000 and expedite permanent residency applications

A dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is pictured at a vaccination site in Vancouver Thursday, March 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
NACI advice to mix vaccines gets varied reaction from AstraZeneca double-dosers

NACI recommends an mRNA vaccine for all Canadians receiving a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine

Bruce Springsteen performs at the 13th annual Stand Up For Heroes benefit concert in support of the Bob Woodruff Foundation in New York on Nov. 4, 2019. (Greg Allen/Invision/AP)
Canadians who got AstraZeneca shot can now see ‘Springsteen on Broadway’

B.C. mayor David Screech who received his second AstraZeneca dose last week can now attend the show

A lotto Max ticket is shown in Toronto on Monday Feb. 26, 2018.THE CANADIAN PRESS
No winning ticket sold for Friday’s $70 million Lotto Max jackpot

The huge jackpot has remained unclaimed for several weeks now

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is seen during a joint news conference following the EU-Canada Summit, in Brussels, Belgium, Tuesday June 15, 2021. Trudeau says Canada is on track now to have 68 million doses delivered by the end of July, which is more than enough to fully vaccinate all 33.2 million Canadians over the age of 12. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Vaccine deliveries enough to fully vaccinate all eligible Canadians by end of July

Three in four eligible Canadians now have their first dose, nearly one in five fully vaccinated.

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam listens to a question during a news conference, in Ottawa, Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021. The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases attributed to the highly contagious Delta variant grew in Canada this week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s public health agency reports spike in confirmed cases of Delta variant

More than 2,000 cases of the variant confirmed across all 10 provinces and in one territory

The federal government says it wants to ban most flavoured vaping products in a bid to reduce their appeal to youth. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Craig Mitchelldyer
Health Canada proposes ban on most vaping flavours it says appeal to youth

If implemented, the regulations would restrict all e-cigarette flavours except tobacco, mint and menthol

The Montreal Police logo is seen in Montreal on Wednesday, July 8, 2020. Some Quebec politicians are calling for an investigation after a video was released that appears to show a Montreal police officer with his leg on a young Black man’s neck during an arrest. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Probe called for after video appearing to show Montreal officer’s knee on Black youth’s neck

Politicians call for investigation after clip evokes memories of George Floyd incident

Most Read