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Last updateThu, 12 Dec 2019 11am

Scheer stepping down as CPC leader

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Leader of the Conservative Party of Canada Andrew Scheer announced this morning he is stepping down as leader.

He made his announcement in session after meeting with his caucus.

“I just informed my colleagues in the conservative caucus that I will be resigning as the leader of the Conservative Party of Canada. I will be asking the Conservative Party National Council to immediately begin the process of organizing a leadership election,” said Scheer.

He said he intends to stay on as leader of the Official Opposition until a new party leader is selected.

           “Serving as leader of this party that I love so much has been the opportunity and the challenge of a lifetime. This was not a decision I came to lightly,“ he said.

Sheer has been serving as an MP since 2004. In 2011 he became Speaker of the House of Commons. In 2017 he won the leadership of the party. In the 2019 election, the Conservatives gained 26 seats, up from 95, and won the popular vote, but the Liberals still formed a minority government. 

Questions of whether he would continue as leader had dogged him since the election. Going forward he stressed unity.

           “As our party begins to embark on this exciting opportunity, to select a new leader, my only ask to my fellow conservatives is this, ‘let’s stay united.’” 


Fred Courtney awarded Speckle Park Commercial Breeder of the Year

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    A Delia area rancher has been rewarded for his hard work in producing commercial cattle.
    The Canadian Speckle Park Association awarded 86-year-old rancher Fred Courtney as the Commercial Breeder of the Year, the first time they presented the award, at the Canadian Western Agribition in Regina November 27.
    As a commercial breeder, he uses purebred Speckle Park bulls, and a variety of heifers including Angus. Courtney says in the 86 years of his life, he has been raising cattle for 76 of them. He bought his own place when he was 21 next door to where he was born and raised, and built his herd.
     He said about 20 years ago, he had about 30-40 heifers to breed and his nephew Cal Hansen suggested he try using Speckle Park.
     Speckle Park is a relatively new breed developed in Saskatchewan. The Speckle Park Breeder Association was formed in 1985, and in 2006 it received full breed status.
    “They were developed in Northern Saskatchewan about 30 or 40 years ago,” explains Courtney.  
    He said prior to Hansen introducing them to him, he knew virtually nothing about Speckle Park.
    “They are medium-sized and they (grade) AAA pretty good. The next spring when I was calving out their heifers, I couldn’t believe it they were trouble-free, and I just decided that was the way to go on my whole herd and changed my whole battery of bulls,” he said.
    He said it took a while, but he researched breeders and their stock. He buys a lot of bulls from Summit 3 in Ardrossan, as well as his first bulls from Saskatchewan.
    “They weren’t too plentiful then, but they are getting really popular now. You drive through the county you see a few speckles in just about every herd,” he said.
    He explains he is not a member of the Association, however, he has made an impression in the community. About a dozen years ago they started a Speckle Park sale in Ponoka and the results were very good. He was the biggest commercial breeder with 200 calves in the sale.
    “At that time the steer calves were top of the market and the heifer calves brought 30 cents more than the steer calves. The next day there was a sale in Burnt Lake, and that sale was the talk of the countryside,” he said.
    After more than seven decades he still loves ranching.
    “Feeding cows, that’s my holiday. I don’t take holidays, until wintertime when I start feeding cows, that’s my holiday,” he said.
    After all of these years, his motto is “Don’t neglect your wife at calving time, buy a registered Speckle bull,” he laughs.

Province supports Craigmyle’s 100-year-old Church with $35,000 CFEP grant

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    Craigmyle’s Historic Church will get a new lease on life with new siding thanks to a Community Facilities Enhancement Project (CFEP) grant from the province.
    Drumheller-Stettler MLA Nate Horner, on behalf of the Honourable Minister of Culture, Multiculturalism, and Status of Women, Leela Aheer, presented the grant of $35,725 to the Craigmyle Historical Society, caretakers of the church.
     Chair of the Historical Society, Bev Bergman, says this is a defining moment for the Society as their many years of hard work and fundraising for this pricey project will now become a reality due to the grant contribution by the CFEP.
    “Thanks to Nate and the Province for supporting this year-round facility,” said Bergman, later joking with the crowd gathered at the announcement, “we have lunch for the dignitaries but we can’t feed the rest of you.”
    The Craigmyle Historic Church was built in 1915 and is used for events year-round including the upcoming Christmas Eve Service.
    MLA Nate Horner was happy to be on hand to provide this funding.
    “This grant was needed and appreciated and it will go a long way to protecting the Historical Church for years to come,” said Horner.
    Work on the siding project is scheduled to begin in spring 2020.

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