Monday, February 07, 2011

Conservatives Shun Regina - Again

Ralph is fuming - and if you're a fellow Saskatchewanian, I'd be too...

Latest Goodale Report:


Since 1885, historic “Depot” Division of the RCMP has been training police officers in Saskatchewan for service across Canada and around the world.

The red-coated Mountie is a renowned symbol of Canada, recognized internationally.

Recent controversies aside, the storied history of the original NWMP right up to today’s RCMP is a fundamental dimension of our country, especially in the West and the North.

But it’s about more than past history. It’s a story of modern crime-fighting using new science and technology. It about combating the global scourge of money-laundering, drugs, gangs and terror. It’s about training peace officers for tough places like Haiti and Afghanistan. And much more.

That’s why, a decade ago, a determined group of RCMP Veterans joined with a volunteer committee of community leaders to develop a decent place – on Depot’s grounds – to tell this story. Thus, the RCMP Heritage Centre was born.

I was proud to lead the drive for federal funding to help get the place built, in partnership with the province, the city, veterans, the business community and volunteers. The result is a $35 million jewel, designed by Arthur Erickson, standing proudly along side Depot.

To secure its future, the Government of Canada needs to take the next logical step and designate the RCMP Heritage Centre a “national museum” of Canada.

Such a designation would reinforce its deserved stature, ensure high-calibre operations, and provide predictable, basic federal financial support.

When I offered this suggestion last week, I received solid approval from the general public, but opposition from the Harper government.

The Conservatives seem intent on diminishing the Heritage Centre’s value and future prospects.

They lavish support on national museums in Ottawa, Halifax and Winnipeg, but balk at Regina.

It’s just all too typical of these Conservatives taking Saskatchewan for granted, again!

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