You know it has to be election-related when the Alberta Tories start putting serious money into post-secondary education. I have no desire to highlight the pre-election goodies that will be dolled out by the Stelmach Tories. Rather, I think it is important to point out an extremely bizarre comment from University of Alberta Board of Governors Chair Brian Heidecker. When asked about the cash infusion, Governor Heidecker – a well-known and connected Tory-supporter and former Tory candidate – responded:
“Being 100 years old means a lot of deferred maintenance.”
The U of A being 100 years old [and doing a piss poor job of taking care of public infrastructure] means a lot of deferred maintenance.
It’s about properly maintaining the public infrastructure so that the generator in university *Building Z* that was meant to last 30 years actually lasts 30 years (and not only 10 or 15 years). It’s about not only taking past investments into public infrastructure seriously, but taking current public funds and taxpayers dollars seriously. It’s about having a plan.
With roughly half-a-billion dollars in deferred maintenance at the U of A alone, it’s clear that the those in the University of Alberta administration and in the Tory Government charged with the responsibility of maintaining the public infrastructure in Alberta’s post-secondary sector haven’t been taking that responsibility seriously.
They didn’t have a plan.