MLA Mark Smith. File photo.

MLA Mark Smith. File photo.

MLA Mark Smith: Alberta Parole Board

MLA Mark Smith on Alberta’s newly established Alberta Parole Board

Alberta Parole Board

This week, Alberta’s government announced the membership of the newly established Alberta Parole Board. This announcement is part of a broader set of concrete actions designed to get a fair deal for Albertans by ending the agreement with the Parole Board of Canada. The Alberta Parole Board will oversee parole hearings for inmates serving sentences for fewer than two years in provincial correctional institutions, and allow Alberta to continue to assert its jurisdictional authority and create a more responsive justice system that reflects the needs of our province’s communities.

The new, independent Alberta Parole Board will provide a fairer, faster, more responsive and responsible justice system that better protects Albertans, their loved ones and their property from repeat offenders, including parolees. A provincial parole board will help end the “revolving” door of the justice system that often enables repeat offenders to target Albertans, particularly those living in rural areas.

Given the lack of action taken by the federal government in addressing Alberta’s request for a fair deal in Canadian Confederation, Alberta’s government must continue to assert its jurisdictional authority where it can. By creating the Alberta Parole Board, Alberta’s government is ensuring that life-altering decisions regarding parole eligibility are made by and for Albertans.

The provincial parole board is comprised solely of Albertans from across the province. Chairing the board will be former chief of the Calgary Police Service and former Chief Superintendent of the RCMP K Division, Rick Hanson. The remaining members include Northland School Board trustee Randy Anderson, ALTIA-ABM Inc. vice-president Paul M. Bourassa, former Central Alberta Mental Health Review Board Chair Craig Paterson, Alberta Health Services project manager Shelly Takacs, lawyer Angela Tripathy and Mackenzie County councillor Lisa Wardley.

Each of these Albertans will be serving either two or three-year terms. We are confident that the experience each of these individuals bring to the table will help them carry out the important work they have been tasked with.

The Alberta Parole Board will act as a safeguard against repeat offenders targeting families and properties, particularly in our rural communities. This week’s announcement follows legislation that Alberta’s government passed last summer to respond to the needs of its citizens, especially rural Albertans who have been victimized by repeat offenders for property crimes.

Alberta is the third province to establish its own parole board, joining Ontario and Quebec. The board will formally begin its operations on Monday, Feb. 1.

I can be reached at the main constituency office in Drayton Valley at 1-800-542-7307 toll-free Monday to Friday, the Devon constituency office at 780-987-3666 Wednesdays and Thursdays or emailed at anytime.

—MLA Mark Smith

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

file photo
County Council discusses new tax incentives for non-residential properties

County of Wetaskiwin Council discussed new tax incentives for non-residential properties at… Continue reading

Screen grab/ Government of Alberta COVID-19 aggregate data map
City of Wetaskiwin down to just five active cases

Active COVID-19 cases in the City of Wetaskiwin continue to decline.

Alberta's chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw says Albertans need to keep making safe choices to start bending the curve back down. (Photo by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)
One new COVID-19 death in Red Deer, 257 additional cases province-wide

Red Deer sits at 459 active cases of the virus

File photo
Norris Beach Road Tender Approved

County of Wetaskiwin Council awarded the tender for Range Road 11 to Crow Enterprises Ltd.

A health-care worker looks at a dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at the Palais de Congress site as Quebec begins mass vaccinations based on age across the province, Monday, March 1, 2021 in Montreal.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Nearly 1 million COVID-19 vaccine doses arriving in Canada this week: Anand

Anita Anand says she’s received assurances from the vaccine manufacturer

A vial of some of the first 500,000 of the two million AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine doses that Canada has secured through a deal with the Serum Institute of India in partnership with Verity Pharma at a facility in Milton, Ont., on Wednesday, March 3, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Carlos Osorio - POOL
Federal panel recommends 4-month gap between COVID vaccine doses due to limited supply

The recommendation applies to all COVID-19 vaccines currently approved in Canada

Maskwacis virtual job fair
MEC goes virtual with job fair and services during pandemic

By Chevi Rabbit For Ponoka News Maskwacis Employment Center’s (MEC’s) semi-annual job… Continue reading

The call is out in Rimbey to sign on with a group that is all about building connections

‘Already, we are building a network where we can rely on each other and help each other out’

FILE - Dolly Parton arrives at the 61st annual Grammy Awards on Feb. 10, 2019, in Los Angeles. The Grammy-winning singer, actor and humanitarian posted a video on Tuesday, March 2, 2021, of her singing just before getting her COVID-19 vaccine shot. Parton donated $1 million to Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tennessee for coronavirus research. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP, File)
‘Vaccine, vaccine’: Dolly sings ‘Jolene’ rewrite before shot

The Grammy-winning legend turned 75 this year

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Chrystia Freeland speaks about the Fiscal update during a news conference in Ottawa, Monday November 30, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
COVID-19: Wage and rent subsidies, lockdown support to be extended until June

Chrystia Freeland says now is not time to lower levels of support

Many rural seniors are having to travel a long way to get vaccinated against COVID-19. Stettler residents are being told to go to Red Deer, Drumheller or Camrose. (Black Press file photo).
Rural central Alberta seniors have to travel far to get vaccines

Stettler residents are being directed to Red Deer, Drumheller or Camrose clinics

Samantha Sharpe, 25, was stabbed to death at Sunchild First Nation on Dec. 12, 2018. Chelsey Lagrelle was sentenced to 4.5 years in prison for manslaughter in a Red Deer courtroom on Tuesday. Photo contributed
Central Alberta woman sentenced to 4 1/2 years for stabbing friend to death in 2018

Chelsey Lagrelle earlier pleaded guilty to stabbing Samantha Sharpe during argument

Calgary police say they received 80 hate crime complaints between January and November 2020. (Pixabay)
‘Racism is a real problem:’ Muslim women fearful following attacks in Edmonton

So far in 2021, three of seven hate-crime-related investigations have involved Somali-Muslim women

Most Read