A nurse has entered the race to represent our riding in the Alberta election. Kelly Zeleny of the Alberta Advantage Party is in the running to be MLA for Vermilion-Lloydminster-Wainwright.

Zeleny has been a director with the Alberta Advantage Party for two years. Currently a rural nurse from Mundare, she brings a history in a variety of different trades such as forestry, agrology and research management. She also brings experience from helping direct the Wildrose party. Zeleny says she was one of the delegates who voted against uniting the Wildrose and PC parties into the UCP and feels vindicated.

“My reason was that I didn’t think that the grassroots policy would be carried over. The Wildrose and PC Party are very different parties fundamentally, and basically, it’s been proven correct,” says Zeleny.

Zeleny has heard from many people in personal encounters about their views on the political landscape. She says many are unsatisfied with the choices they have before them; on one hand, they dislike the government and don’t want to see it in power. On the other hand, they don’t see a home in the UCP and find Jason Kenney an undesirable leader amidst the kamikaze candidate investigation.

“There’s a lot of undecided voters out there, regardless of what the media and everybody is telling us. We found firsthand out there on the road that people just don’t know what to do for politics right now, and that’s where we think we can step in.”

Zeleny says the party is looking to overhaul the energy sector. With pipeline delays expected to impact the industry, an Alberta Advantage government would streamline regulations. They would also extract energy from orphan wells with microgeneration technology. Coal plants would open for production, and the Alberta Advantage would allow pursuit of greener energy, but not with public money. Zeleny says that getting resources like Alberta oil moving is a priority for the AAP.

“We need governments that would support the energy sector, and use the resources that we have in this province.”

The party would also reduce taxes for Albertans. Currently, they plan to scrap the carbon tax over three years to avoid any unforseen contract payouts. They also plan to implement a $24,120 basic personal tax credit and drop corporate taxes to 10.5 per cent. Zeleny says they’ve received mixed results from this proposal but defends it as a way to attract investment. Zeleny adds that many in Lloydminster need to get back to work, which will be a priority for her and her party.

The AAP hopes to explore other reforms like finding efficiencies in healthcare that don’t affect front-line workers, such as cutting down management. They also support school choices and oppose amalgamating school systems. Zeleny hopes to represent all the AAP’s stances at the All Candidates Forum on April 3, and hopes to get her message out to constituents soon.

“We’re Albertans for Alberta, and we need to change. It’s getting in a dire situation already and I’m tired of all the above myself. We need to do a drastic change with the government in this province, and start looking out for our own people right now.”