Alberta’s finance critic says a report on the feasibility of a provincial replacement for the Canada Pension Plan has been kept back from the public for the past two years.
In a press conference held last week, Shannon Phillips, a member of the New Democratic Party and opposition finance critic, criticized the United Conservative Party and its leader Danielle Smith for not making the results of the report public. “She promised to release a report that the government has actually been sitting on for a couple of years.”
In a statement published by Lethbridge News Now, the Alberta government said it hasn’t received the report. Once the report is final and the government has the opportunity to review it, it will be released to the public, noted the statement, and if Albertans make it clear they want to have a referendum on establishing an Alberta Pension Plan, the government will do so.
In 2020, then premier Jason Kenney convened a panel to explore withdrawing from the CPP. The panel recommended the provincial government withdraw from the CPP and create an Alberta Pension Plan, subject to a referendum. In addition to the panel, previous provincial governments have raised the idea and Smith has also talked about it publicly.
In the press conference, Phillips called the potential withdrawal from the CPP as “very devastating” for the financial security of Albertans.
The Alberta treasury department didn’t respond to the Canadian Investment Review‘s request for comment.