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MLA committee to choose police college site

The fate of Fort Macleod and the other three finalists for the provincial police college rests this morning in the hands of four Alberta MLAs.
The committee spent Tuesday touring Fort Macleod, Red Deer, Camrose and Lac La Biche which made the short list of the college site selection committee.
“The purpose here is to put a second set of eyes on this whole process,” said Andy Wieler, director of communications for the Alberta Solicitor General’s office. “It puts a fresh perspective on everything. The site selection committee wants to make sure it has done all its homework properly, and the MLA committee will provide that validation.”
Mary Anne Jablonski, Fred Lindsay, Len Mitzel and Ivan Strang yesterday toured Fort Macleod, Red Deer, Camrose and Lac La Biche.
The MLA committee will make its recommendation to Alberta Solicitor General Harvey Cenaiko, who is expected to announce the site some time in August.
“The MLAs will be recommending the choice,” Wieler said Friday in a telephone interview. “The review committee has pared it down to four.”
Wieler was unable to say when, or where, the announcement of the site selection will be made.
“We’ll give the committee as much time as they need to review the bids and come up with a recommendation,” Wieler said.
Livingstone-Macleod MLA Dave Coutts has confidence his home town is in good hands.
“The make-up of this committee will be strong enough they will make a balanced decision,” said Coutts, who is minister of sustainable resource development. “The people on this committee are strong.”
Coutts was responding to a question regarding the appearance of bias with the appointment of Red Deer-North MLA Jablonski.
“The minister (Solicitor General Harvey Cenaiko) has chosen this committee,” Coutts said. “Certainly when the minister chooses a committee he does so for specific reasons.” Coutts said all four members of the committee chaired by Strang are knowledgeable about the college and each of the four bids.
“All four of them are very detail-oriented people,” Coutts said. “They’re very experienced in going out and looking at proposals like this.”
Coutts said the backgrounds of each committee member are impressive.
“They’re good people,” Coutts said. “They will do their due diligence.
Coutts also pointed out that while Jablonski is MLA for Red Deer-North, the proposed site is not in her constituency.
“I’m not overly worried,” Coutts said. “I don’t see one person being able to sway an entire committee.”
The following are the biographies of the members of the MLA review committee from the Alberta government Web site.

Mary Anne Jablonski
Jablonski was first elected Red Deer-North MLA in a by-election in 2000 and was re-elected in the 2001 provincial general election. She was elected in 2004 to her third term. Jablonski chairs the Justice and Government Services Standing Policy Committee and has also served as chair of the Youth Secretariat.
Jablonski has also been a member of standing committee on public accounts; the special standing committee on members services; and the standing policy committee on health and community living.
Jablonski was raised in St. Catharines, Ont. and was awarded a scholarship to attend Brock University, where she studied psychology and political science.
Married since 1971, Jablonski and her husband Bob have three grown children and one grandchild.
Jablonski and her family moved to Alberta in 1980 when her husband was transferred to Penhold with the Canadian Forces.
From 1982-’85, she helped lobby the federal government for a dental plan for the families of the Canadian Armed Forces and RCMP as well as for the rights of spouses of military members.
Before entering politics Jablonski and her husband owned and operated a fiberglass manufacturing company that employed 18 people. Her work experience also includes seven years in the banking industry.
Jablonski has been involved in community groups, sporting associations, church boards, the Catholic Women’s League, Girl Guides of Canada and the Chamber of Commerce. In 1999 as a member of the I.T.C. Jablonski won the international speech competition in Kobe, Japan.

Fred Lindsay
Lindsay, who is in his first term as a Stony Plain MLA, was certified as a survey technician and a concrete technician from NAIT in 1967 and obtained his ERCB surface mine manager’s certificate in 1975.
Lindsay held many positions with Calgary Power and TransAlta including surveyor, party chief, assistant mine supervisor, mine supervisor, farm and reclamation manager and community relations manager.
He was also an auxiliary constable with Parkland County from 1972-’74.
Lindsay was mayor of Wabamun from 1980-’84 and 2001-’04. He was also a stakeholder relations consultant.
In the Wabamun community, Lindsay was arena manager and president. He was a hockey coach, league organizer, referee and president of the Parkland Minor Hockey League. Lindsay was a trustee with Parkland school division from 1985-’93 and director of Yellowhead Regional Planning Commission from 1981-’84. He was also chair of the New Era Municipal Planning agency from 2003-’04.
Lindsay has been a director and member of the Stony Plain Progressive Conservative Association for approximately 25 years.
Lindsay was Wabamun Citizen of the Year in 1984 and received the TransAlta community service and entrepreneurship awards.
He was elected to the Canadian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy in 1993.
Lindsay is married to Janice and together they have raised four children.

Len Mitzel
Mitzel is the first-term MLA for Medicine Hat-Cypress.
He worked for Alberta Transportation as a surveyor and was promoted through the ranks until he became responsible for two crews, primarily focused on preliminary designing and constructing of major highways in southern Alberta before entering the University of Lethbridge as a second year pre-engineering student.
When his father died in 1977, Mitzel returned to run the family farm. He served as reeve of the MD of Cypress for 12 years and as chairman of the regional health authority board for six years.
Mitzel was president of Zone 1 and chairman of the provincial mayors’ and reeves’ association of the Alberta Association of Municipal Districts and Counties.
Mitzel was co-founder and chairman of the Mayors’ and Reeves’ Association of Southeast Alberta
He chaired the Southeast Alberta Water Task Force Committee, which won an Emerald Award for its work on reclaiming abandoned water wells.
Mitzel was also a member of the Alberta Environment Water for Life Task Force; vice-president of the Red Coat Trail Association; executive member and president, of Southeast Alberta Travel and Convention Association; and a director of the South East Alberta Water Co-op.
Mitzel and his wife June, are founding members and volunteer as curators for the Etzikom Museum of South East Alberta and the Historic Windmill Center.

Ivan Strang
A resident of Edson, Strang is in his third term as MLA for West Yellowhead and chairs the rural caucus and is a member of the Treasury Board. He was appointed Deputy Whip in April.
The 66-year-old Strang was born in Winnipeg and later lived in Hay River, NWT.
Strang worked for Federal Public Works and the Giant Yellowknife Mine before moving to Edmonton in 1967 to begin a 27-year career in the tire business.
Strang worked for three tire companies before opening Tamarack Tire Service in Edson, which he operated until 1994.
Strang served one term as a councillor for the Town of Edson before serving as mayor from 1989-’97. He was also president of the Edson Chamber of Commerce, and in 1984 received the Alberta Small Business Award.
Since being elected as West Yellowhead MLA in 1997, Strang has chaired the standing committee on public affairs; the Alberta Forestry Research Institute advisory committee; the quota tenure review committee; and the endangered species conservation committee.
Strang has also been a member of the standing policy committees on agriculture and municipal affairs and agriculture, environment and rural development.
In addition, Strang has been a member of the standing committees on private bills; and privileges and elections, standing orders and printing.
He has also been a member of the Natural Heritage Act MLA Review Committee; the Task Force on Children at Risk; and the Non-Profit Tax Exemption Review Committee.
Strang has two daughters and six grandchildren. He lives in Edson with his wife, Tammy.

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Index of Police College Stories - Listed by release date in Gazette

Apr 24 - Fort Macleod town council is planning for the future

Jan 10 - Province gives Fort Macleod $10.26-million for police college costs

Sep 11 - Wildrose Party will fight for Fort Macleod

Sep 04 - Fort Macleod residents devastated by decision to scrap police college

Sep 04 - Fort Macleod asks premier to reverse college decision

Sep 03 - Fort Macleod calls on premier to reverse police college decision

Aug 29 - Residents of Fort Macleod punished for voting Wildrose

Aug 29 - Wildrose says Fort Macleod victim of Tory fiscal incompetence

Aug 29 - Government cancels funding for police training college

Aug 28 - Council awards police college permit

Aug 01 - Police training facility will be unique in Canada

Nov 01 - Province approves grant for police college infrastructure

Oct 19 - Target schedule is set to build police college

Sep 27 - Stakeholders convene to discuss police college

Aug 24 - Police college sod-turning

Aug 16 - Police college sod-turning Mon. Aug. 22

Jul 26 - Fort Macleod puts more cash toward college

May 17 - Province moving ahead with police college plans

May 03 - Council okays transfer of police college land

Apr 05 - Police college site work could start in summer

Dec 01 - Macleod finds way to build police college

Dec 01 - Macleod pitches co-op to build police college

Nov 30 - Macleod feels positive about police college

Aug 25 - Police college partner possible

Aug 18 - Council works on own plan for police college

Jul 07 - Calgary project no threat to police college

Jun 09 - Mayor pushes solicitor general for collect action

Mar 31 - Macleod’s neighbours support police college

Mar 31 - Mayor says government just has to make college a priority

Dec 30 - MD council writes to support police college

Dec 02 - Southern Alberta backs police college

Nov 25 - Regional group lobbies for police college

Sep 23 - Police college has not been shelved — yet

Jul 29 - Mayor: ‘Police college project not cancelled’

May 06 - Infrastructure minister says college a priority

Apr 22 - Facebook page supports police college

Apr 01 - Council lobbies for progress on police college

Feb 18 - Solicitor General urges police college patience

Nov 04 - Police college discussed during Question Period

Nov 04 - Macleod mayor confident police college is coming

Oct 21 - Fort Macleod ‘anxious’ for police college start

Apr 16 - Province gets nine police college proposals

Mar 12 - Macleod can do business with police college

Sep 05 - Province reviews police college P3 proposals

Jun 26 - Police college Web site created

Jun 06 - Police college project is on track

May 30 - Police college officials visit Fort Macleod

May 23 - Police college headlines open house

Mar 28 - Solicitor General: ‘Police college is coming to Macleod’

Jan 31 - Mayor strikes police college committee

Nov 22 - Steering committee meets to discuss police college

Sep 13 - Opportunity knocking for Fort Macleod

Sep 13 - Macleod prepares to guide growth

Sep 13 - Police college is Fort Macleod’s destiny

Sep 13 - Mayor weathers police college criticism

Sep 13 - Fort Macleod celebrates successful college bid

Sep 06 - Fort Macleod lands Alberta police college

Sep 06 - P3 partners sought for police college

Sep 06 - Police training centre will be world-class

Dec 21 - Council designates land for police college

Dec 21 - Macleod’s police college bid in province’s hands

Nov 23 - Task force builds police college bid

Nov 02 - Council still pursuing college