The MLA for Drumheller-Stettler has his nose out of joint over Alberta Government plans to phase out coal fired power plants in the province.
 
Rick Strankman was chagrined to learn he wasn't welcome at a meeting of the committee appointed by the government to get the reactions of people affected by the move.
 
"I was kind of set back, not because I'm looking for any sort of stardom, but as the MLA for the area that I wasn't asked to give any input," he told 99.5 Drum FM. "It was a closed session; I was able to talk (later) about the unusual suicide rate in the Town of Hanna (but) what the effect of that will be I don't know."
 
"People that I've talked to, (Hanna) mayor (Chris) Warwick and others, I wouldn't say are suspicious but they're conscious of the fact that is is closed meetings," he continued. "I guess (it's) because they're afraid of having a gigantic community meeting in regards to the negativity of the policy."
 
Hanna is one of several Alberta communities affected by the policy as close to 200 residents of the town are employed by the Sheerness Power Plant and Coal Mine.
 
"It's pretty frustrating that they would listen to some elected officials and not me," complained Strankman. "I don't profess any special notoriety, but I do represent the greater majority of the people of the area."
 
The coal phase out advisory committee is to report back to the Alberta Government next fall.

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