326 B High Street West Moose Jaw, SK

From the Desk of Warren Michelson April 6, 2018

March 29, 2018 View this email in your browser
shield FROM THE DESK OF WARREN MICHELSON, MLA

Reservations Open April 9 for Saskatchewan Parks

Starting on Monday, April 9, campers can begin reserving sites in their favourite Saskatchewan provincial parks for the 2018 season.

“With a variety of activities available and an abundance of beautiful landscapes and lakes to explore, it’s no surprise our provincial parks continue to be popular travel destinations,” Parks, Culture and Sport Minister Gene Makowsky said.  “Whether you prefer adventure or relaxation, there’s so much to see, learn and discover.  We look forward to welcoming guests back to our parks for another memorable season.”


To help provide the best user experience possible during the reservation launch, staggered launch dates and a queuing system will be implemented again in 2018.  Over ten business days, one to three new parks will open for reservations each day at 7 a.m.

The 2018 launch schedule is as follows:

  • Monday, April 9 – Blackstrap, Pike Lake
  • Tuesday, April 10 – Buffalo Pound, Douglas, Danielson
  • Wednesday, April 11 – Echo Valley, Rowan’s Ravine
  • Thursday, April 12 – Duck Mountain, Good Spirit Lake, Greenwater Lake
  • Friday, April 13 – Crooked Lake, Moose Mountain
  • Monday, April 16 – Cypress Hills
  • Tuesday, April 17 – Saskatchewan Landing, The Battlefords
  • Wednesday, April 18 – Meadow Lake
  • Thursday, April 19 – Bronson Forest, Lac La Ronge, Makwa Lake
  • Friday, April 20 – Candle Lake, Great Blue Heron, Narrow Hills

From April 9-13 and April 16-20, the queue system will open at 6:40 a.m. daily.  To be placed in the queue, customers will need to log in to the reservation system between 6:40 a.m. and 7 a.m. (no sooner or later).  At 7 a.m., customers will receive a random number and will enter the reservation website to proceed with their booking.  Anyone accessing the reservation website after 7 a.m. will be placed at the end of the line.


By staggering the launch dates and utilizing the queue system, SaskParks is able to manage the high demand on the system to ensure technical stability and facilitate faster checkout times.  Campers are encouraged to prepare for the reservation launch in advance.





Customers can visit www.saskparks.goingtocamp.com to familiarize with the website, create or update their user account and view potential campsites that best fit their camping needs.


Transferable annual park entry permits can be purchased for $65 at the time of campsite reservations or at the park entry upon arrival; 1-day, 3-day and weekly park entry passes are also available.


More information about the launch including tutorials and booking tips is available at 
www.saskparks.com.  During launch, customers can contact the reservation call centre at 1-855-737-7275 or the SaskParks customer line at 1-800-205-7070 for assistance.  Email inquiries can be sent to parks.info@gov.sk.ca.


Saskatchewan Provincial Park campsites are in high demand.  Launch is the best time for campers to book trips to the park of their choice.


AUTOMATIC PST REFUNDS ON CERTAIN TYPES OF INSURANCE


Policy holders of crop, livestock, hail, margin/income, life and health insurance in Saskatchewan will soon receive a sales tax refund or credit from their insurance provider.  Refunds and credits are automatic, meaning no action is required of policy holders.


As announced February 26, 2018, Provincial Sales Tax (PST) no longer applies to the following types of insurance:

  • Individual and group life, health, disability, accident and sickness insurance; and
  • Crop, livestock, hail and margin/income insurance.

The PST exemption on these insurance products is retroactive to August 1, 2017, the date certain insurance premiums became taxable in Saskatchewan.


Insurance providers who collected and remitted the PST will calculate all refunds payable and either credit each policy holder’s account or provide a refund.


Policy holders do not have to request or submit a claim to their insurance provider or to the government to receive a refund or credit.  Most refunds or credits will be paid by June 30, 2018.


If you do not receive a refund or credit by that date, or have questions about the process, please contact your insurance provider.

Campotex cars filled with Saskatchewan Potash heading to the Vancouver port.

RECENT SNOWFALL INCREASES SPRING RUNOFF OUTLOOK


Today, the Water Security Agency (WSA) released the April spring runoff forecast.


Snowfall across most of Saskatchewan was well above normal in March, increasing the runoff potential across the province with northern and southern Saskatchewan showing two different outlooks.


Moisture conditions going into winter freeze-up were well below normal across southern Saskatchewan, with very little precipitation during summer and fall of 2017, and near to above normal across northern Saskatchewan.


Winter snow accumulation to April 1, 2018, was generally near average across Saskatchewan with the exception of an area south of the Cypress Hills and near the communities of Scott, Prince Albert and Hudson Bay, which have received above average accumulations.


Much of northern Saskatchewan is expecting to see an above normal spring runoff with areas around Scott, Hudson Bay and north of Prince Albert up to Waskesiu Lake likely to experience well above normal runoff.  Widespread flooding is not expected in these areas, but localized flooding, minor out of bank flows and overtopping of roadways could occur.


In southern Saskatchewan, most areas are likely to experience a below to well below normal spring runoff outside of an above normal pocket in the southwest corner near Eastend to Val Marie.


With below normal temperatures expected to occur across the province in early April, snowmelt runoff will be later than normal.  This increases the risk of a rapid melt that can result in higher than expected runoff and potentially some flood-related issues.


Some agricultural water supply issues began to emerge in late summer 2017.  In the areas where well below average 2018 snowmelt runoff is projected, these water supply shortages may intensify and expand to additional areas.


The snowpack over the eastern slopes of the Rocky Mountains is generally well above average for this time of year.  Lake Diefenbaker is currently 0.7 metres below its normal level for this time of year, but is expected to be at desirable summer operating levels by July.


WSA will continue to monitor the 2018 spring runoff conditions across Saskatchewan.  If warranted, further updates will be issued as the spring runoff progresses.


For more information on stream flows and lake levels, visit 
www.wsask.ca.


Lump Sum Pay at Retirement

The Financial and Consumer Affairs Authority (FCAA) wants to remind people that not all pension plans are the same and some have a lump sum payment upon retirement, while others provide a monthly pension cheque for life.


“It’s important for people to know if they will receive a lump sum payment or a monthly payment as that can effect retirement budgeting,” FCAA Pension Division Director Leah Fichter said.  “It can be stressful figuring out how to make a lump sum last the rest of your life.  There are resources available to help you.”


If you receive a lump sum payment, here are some points to consider:

  • Talk to a financial planner, a professional who has experience managing people’s retirement money.
  • Make a budget, so you can track your income and expenses.
  • Talk to your current pension plan administrator, so you can learn about retirement planning resources.
For more information on retirement planning, visit www.fcaa.gov.sk.ca/lumpsum

CONGRATULATIONS AND GOOD LUCK TEAM SASK!

REPORT FROM THE LEGISLATURE


From gas and groceries to clothing and other necessities, provinces across Canada are finding out how carbon taxes drive up costs and make it harder for families to make ends meet.


Not only do carbon taxes hurt families by making their day-to-day lives more expensive, they threaten their jobs by making our export-based economies less competitive in a global market.


While the NDP and the Trudeau Liberals want to put a carbon tax on the people of this province, our government is standing up to protect Saskatchewan jobs, industries and communities.


We are launching a legal challenge to new federal legislation that would impose a carbon tax on Saskatchewan through a legal reference case that will be taken to the Court of Appeal.


Other interested parties, including other provinces, can intervene in the case.


Other provinces may want to intervene regardless of their provincial climate change plans as this carbon tax legislation is an unprecedented case of the federal government interfering in provincial jurisdiction.


Both the Saskatchewan Urban Municipalities Association (SUMA) and the Saskatchewan Association of Rural Municipalities (SARM) have voted overwhelmingly to oppose a carbon tax.


At $50 per tonne, a carbon tax on Saskatchewan would cost as much as $2 billion to our economy; $1,250 per year for a Saskatchewan family of four; and $10 to $12 an acre for a farm family.


The federal government’s own documents say the carbon tax would have to reach $300 per tonne, not $50, to hit its targets. Saskatchewan people understand that this new tax just doesn’t add up.


If our stated goal is to reduce emissions, we know that a carbon tax is not the way to go.  Our industries are already taking action to reduce emissions and we will continue building on these efforts through a made-in-Saskatchewan climate change strategy that will be far more effective than a carbon tax.

Prairie Resilience: A Made-in-Saskatchewan Climate Change Strategy focuses on climate resilience, emissions reductions and adapting to the effects of climate change – without implementing a carbon tax. The plan includes setting sector-specific output-based performance standards on large emitting facilities, such as those in oil and gas, and mining. We will reduce our emissions, but in a way that is economically sustainable and promotes growth.


Our Prairie Resilience plan is broader and bolder than a single policy approach and will achieve better results. It offers flexibility for emitters to comply with regulations and reduce emissions, including an offset system and technology fund, and recognizes emissions reductions initiatives that have already taken place.


As far as emissions reductions are concerned, Saskatchewan has a good story to tell. Since 2005, emissions intensity is down 8.8% (2016) while GDP is up 22%.


In agriculture, zero-till has offset 11.4 million tonnes and pulse crops offset 2 million tonnes.  21 million acres of grasslands plus wetlands and forest lands also act as carbon sinks.


Carbon Capture and Storage at Boundary Dam 3 has now captured 2 million tonnes – the equivalent of taking 500,000 cars off the road at a time when 1,600 coal plants are being built around the world.


Saskatchewan plans to double our renewable energy capacity to 50% – the most aggressive renewable energy target in Canada. Our province is also projected to have the second-largest reduction in emissions among the provinces.


Saskatchewan has a strong case against the imposition of a carbon tax. At a time when our government is pursuing real solutions to tackle climate change, we will continue to stand up for Saskatchewan people and fight the costly carbon tax plans of the NDP and the Trudeau Liberals.


Take Precautions Against Hantavirus

Health officials are reminding residents about the risk of hantavirus this spring in areas potentially infested by rodents.  People are most often exposed when cleaning up enclosed buildings (such as grain bins, sheds, barns, garages, trailers, cottages and homes) or farm equipment and vehicles after winter.


“You can get hantavirus by breathing in contaminated airborne particles from the droppings, urine and saliva of infected deer mice,” Saskatchewan’s Deputy Chief Medical Health Officer Dr. Denise Werker said.  “Hantavirus can cause a rare, but often fatal lung illness known as hantavirus pulmonary syndrome.”


Symptoms usually start within one to six weeks of exposure and include fever, muscle aches, cough, headaches, nausea and vomiting.  Some people develop severe symptoms that can be life threatening.  Seek medical attention immediately if you have a cough, fever and shortness of breath.


To avoid exposure to hantavirus, be aware of mouse droppings and nesting materials and take the following precautions when cleaning infested areas:

  • Ventilate the building by opening doors and windows for at least 30 minutes before cleaning;
  • Use wet mopping methods and wear rubber or plastic gloves;
  • Wear goggles and a well-fitting N-95 type filter mask when cleaning areas contaminated by droppings in a confined space;
  • Dampen areas contaminated with rodent droppings with bleach disinfectant and remove droppings with a damp mop or cloth;
  • Avoid using dry cleaning methods such as dusting, sweeping, vacuuming or air-hosing;
  • Steam clean, shampoo or spray upholstered furniture with a detergent, disinfectant or a mixture of bleach and water; andWash clothes and bedding with detergent in hot water.
Also, take steps to reduce rodent infestations:
  • Block openings that might allow rodents to enter a building;
  • Store human and animal food, water and garbage in containers with tightly fitted lids; and
  • Move woodpiles or other potential hiding places for mice away from your home.

There have been 31 people with hantavirus pulmonary syndrome reported in Saskatchewan since 1994, 10 of whom died.

For more information on hantavirus, visit the government website at www.saskatchewan.ca/residents/health/diseases-and-conditions/hantavirus and HealthLine Online at www.healthlineonline.ca.

For advice on symptoms or when to seek care, call HealthLine 811.


WHAT’S HAPPENING IN MOOSE JAW

Friday, April 6, 2018

What:  MJ Warriors vs Swift Current
Time:   7:00 p.m.
Place: 
Mosaic Place

What:  The Louisiana Hayride Show 
Time:    7:30 P.M. 
Place:   Mae Wilson

Saturday, April 7, 2018

What: Cosmo Senior Citizens’ Centre Craft Sale
Time:  9:00 a.m. – 3:00 pm
Place: Cosmo Senior Citizens’ Centre
Cost:  Free Admission

What: Moose and District Seniors Social Dance
Time:   8:00 pm
Place:  Timothy Eaton Centre

What: Business Expo Moose Jaw

Time:   10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Place:  Moose Jaw Exhibition Centre

What: Bowling Fundraiser

Time:   6:00 p.m. 
Place:  Bugsy’s Pub

Sunday, April 8, 2018

What:  Cosmo’s Craft & Trade Sale
Time:   9:00 a.m.- 3:00 p.m. 
Place:   Cosmo Centre
Admission:  Free

What: Business Expo Moose Jaw

Time:  10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Place: Moose Jaw Exhibition Centre

What:  Rowletta Spring Supoer
Time:   4:00 p.m. – 7:00 pm
Place:   Rowletta Civic Centre
Cost:  Adults $15  Under 10  $7
Tickets available at the door or
contact Bonnie @306-631-6534 or Dusti @ 306-690-9186

Upcoming Events:Tuesday April 1, 2018

PROVINCIAL BUDGET