Kelvington–Wadena MLA says medals, highways highlights of 2022

When asked what the biggest successes of 2022 were in Kelvington–Wadena, MLA Hugh Nerlien said the Queen Jubilee awards and infrastructure improvements on Highways 38, 5, 16 and 349.

On a more provincial scale, Saskatchewan’s population increase, agriculture and its strong economy, as well as action in recruitment and retention in the healthcare field were some success stories for him.

The Queen Jubilee medal presentations was reflective of our provinces generous people who give of their time on a regular basis to organizations that are important to Saskatchewan, Nerlien said.

He said that the ICIP grant (Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program) had many positives impact on his riding with many municipalities and rural municipalities taking advantage of the grant program that was offered through the Federal and provincial governments. This program has increased the economy in all areas of the province but has helped create jobs and improve the quality of infrastructure in Northeast Saskatchewan. The program is providing more than $900 million in federal funding for all types of Saskatchewan infrastructure projects over 10 years until 2028. He said he looks forward to new investment opportunities in rare earth metals such as lithium within the Northeast. He said there has been massive investment in fibre roll out in the region for increased cellular coverage and internet speed capacity.

Nerlien said that this doesn’t mean 2022 didn’t come with its challenges. The lack of workforce has been challenging in the healthcare field and the need to recruit is more evident than ever. He identifies utilizing all aspects of healthcare and utilizing the professionals we have in the province. For example, he said pharmacists should be able to prescribe certain medications instead of having to go to a doctor's office

He also mentioned the need for continued collaboration with First Nation communities. He believes that solving problems can only come by working together, whether it be crime, drugs or mental health. He challenges communities to continue to learn about each other, share our cultures and use our diversity as a strength.

Nicole Goldsworthy, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Humboldt Journal