Saskatchewan’s New Democrats will have a new critic to debate the incumbent minister over the agriculture file.
Provincial opposition leader Ryan Meili on Tuesday announced Trent Wotherspoon, the MLA for Regina Rosemont since 2007, as the NDP’s critic for agriculture as well as finance, SaskTel, Saskatchewan Crop Insurance Corp. (SCIC) and the province’s Crown Investments Corporation.
Wotherspoon was returned to office in the Oct. 26 general election by a spread of 1,580 votes over Saskatchewan Party challenger Alex Nau.
A teacher before entering politics, Wotherspoon also previously served as a director for Regina’s Warehouse Business Improvement District. In the legislature, he also previously served as interim opposition leader and as critic for portfolios including education and Crown corporations.
As ag critic he replaces Yens Pedersen, who on Oct. 26 lost his seat for Regina Northeast against Saskatchewan Party challenger Gary Grewal by a spread of 450 votes.
When the legislature reconvenes, Wotherspoon will face David Marit, who Premier Scott Moe re-appointed Monday as minister for agriculture and SCIC.
Marit, MLA for the southwestern riding of Wood River since 2016, has handled the ag file since 2018, when Lumsden-Morse MLA Lyle Stewart stepped down from the ag post to undergo treatment for cancer.
Stewart also returned to the provincial cabinet Monday as provincial secretary and as legislative secretary to the premier responsible for provincial autonomy.
The provincial secretary’s office handles matters relating to official protocol, provincial honours and awards and French language services. Stewart’s role as legislative secretary, Moe said, “will focus on areas where Saskatchewan can exercise and strengthen our provincial autonomy within the Canadian federation.”
Among other cabinet posts of interest to producers, Don Morgan was shuffled Monday to become minister responsible for “all major Crown corporations” including SaskWater, SaskPower, SaskEnergy, SGI, SaskTel and SaskGaming.
Joe Hargrave has also been shuffled to become minister for highways and the Saskatchewan Water Security Agency, and Warren Kaeding to become environment minister.
Jeremy Harrison was re-appointed Monday as minister of trade, while Everett Hindley, MLA for Swift Current since a 2018 byelection, enters cabinet as minister for mental health and addictions, seniors and rural and remote health. — Glacier FarmMedia Network