Strathmore-Brooks MLA Jason Hale has called it quits.
Hale was one of the Wildrose MLAs that crossed the floor to join the Progressive Conservative Party last December. He penned a letter to his constituents informing them he is retiring from politics, a decision made with his family.
"We have, therefore, decided I will finish my current term in politics and then take a step back for the time being. I will not seek re-election at this time," states a letter he posed on Facebook. "While I am stepping away from full-time political life, I will remain involved in serving our community and province. I am proud to support Premier Prentice and his plan for restoring Alberta’s fiscal foundation and his vision for Alberta's future."
He states that his political career, combined with a career in the oil and gas industry had kept him away from his home, family and ranch.
"For the past 11 years, I have spent much of my time working away from home as an oil/gas drilling consultant and now as your MLA. My family and I own and operate a cattle ranch; however, that family business has taken a back seat to my time away from home," he said. "My wife and I have recently been re-evaluating our business and reconsidering concentrating on it for the benefit of our boys. Our young sons are interested in expanding our agriculture operation and my wife and I look forward to working with them to achieve this goal, and helping get them set up for their futures. Therefore, my family and I have decided that this will be our focus."
He says he wants to remain involved in the community.
"While I am stepping away from full-time political life, I will remain involved in serving our community and province. I am proud to support Premier Prentice and his plan for restoring Alberta’s fiscal foundation and his vision for Alberta's future," he said. "My time as your MLA has truly been a remarkable experience and I am grateful for all the friendships I've made."
His announcement came shortly after Bruce Rowe, another former Wildrose MLA for Olds Didsbury-Three Hills also declined to run in the next election. He is the third floor crosser who is not running in the next election.
In Strathmore-Brooks, Jason Fildebrandt has secured the Wildrose Party nomination. For the Progressive Conservatives, Newell County Reeve Molly Douglass is seeking the nomination.