Throne speech outlines province's priorities for child care, education as Selinger fights for political future
Jeff Keele, CTV Winnipeg
Published Thursday, November 20, 2014 10:38AM CST
Last Updated Thursday, November 20, 2014 6:53PM CST
Premier Greg Selinger has tabled a throne speech he says is based on the priorities of Manitobans.
The speech comes as Selinger battles people from within his own party who have openly questioned his leadership.
The premier says he has broad support from within his caucus on the contents of the document.
- Eliminating interest on Manitoba student loans
- Banning minors from using tanning beds
- Moving ahead with a previous pledge to build a higher bridge on PTH 75 in Morris to keep the route open during flood season
- Province says it’s closer to identifying where it will build a new outlet from Lake Manitoba for better flood protection
- More Quick Care clinics will be constructed in Winnipeg
- A promise to create a Child Care Commission to make child care universally accessible
- New legislation to help firefighters and paramedics who have PTSD
- And new consumer protection rules for pet owners requiring veterinarian services
The province also included a vague promise to work with new Winnipeg Mayor Brian Bowman on fixing streets, building rapid transit and creating a more vibrant downtown Winnipeg.
Selinger said the speed limit on Trans-Canada Highway between Winnipeg and Saskatchewan could be raised to 110 km/h in the near future.
Five cabinet ministers previously called for Premier Selinger to step down. He refused and vowed to continue governing.
The cabinet ministers were later demoted.
To get through this legislature session, Selinger will need to rely on support from the former cabinet ministers, who remain in caucus with limited privileges.
The opposition Tories say they will try to get those former ministers to vote to with them to topple the government.
But the rebels have already said they will not do that.
"There's a need for change but I think that the delivery mechanism is a change in government, not just another throne speech," said Brian Pallister, leader of the Manitoba PC party.
The Liberals also were critical of the throne speech.
"They're trying to save their jobs by making any promises that they can," said Rana Bokhari, Manitoba Liberal leader.
Selinger would not provide a price tag on any of the measures, saying that will be worked out in next year’s budget.
There were some cost-cutting promises too, including the reduction of office space used by the government by 100,000 square feet.
- with files from The Canadian Press