Albertans are reaping the rewards of the decisions that they stood behind a dozen years ago.
The cash back was down on the list.
We've said consistently that the federal government should not take more in tax from people than they need for program expenditure purposes, because while Alberta is very competitive tax-wise, Canada is not.
The difference is that we have wide swings in Alberta on revenue on royalties. We can pretty well predict on the tax side within pretty close margins what our income is going to be. But you would not want us to budget on $60 oil, so we use the best information we have from the best analysts we have.
I think all of us were a bit surprised when gas went to $14 (per thousand cubic feet) yesterday, ... We knew, of course, from the applications to the AEUB a week ago, that it would be higher.
Albertans work hard and contribute to the strength of the province.
We have committed to the endowments, which is saving, we've committed to capital, which is investment, we've committed to inflation-proofing the Heritage Fund . . . and there is the very real possibility that we could add more dollars in that area, ... So we're talking about a small amount of this surplus, really.
They should be very proud for the efforts they made in supporting the premier and his caucus of making the tough decisions to get our fiscal house in order.
I hope that we'll move on from this, but if there is something that happens, I hope it comes with backing.