EDMONTON, Alberta – “A balanced 2015 budget with $45 oil? No problem. Balance budgets through 2020 even if oil was trading at $30? I can do that, too. Just watch me.” – A confident Jim Prentice speaking at a Sunday afternoon game of shinny in Grand Prairie.
With West Texas Intermediate closing at just over $47 dollars per barrel yesterday, you don’t need a Ph.D. in finance to understand that the Alberta government coffers are currently hurting, and matters are only expected to worsen as this 5 year oil price depression possibly extends through 2016 and into 2017.
But Jim Prentice, arrogantly undeterred in the face of this unprecedented challenge, has not only committed to balancing the 2015, but also for years to come even if natural gas and crude oil prices do not recover or even if they continue to weaken.
My Prentice, after careful deliberation with his cabinet, has compiled a list of initiatives that he and his team plan to implement by the end of Q1 2015 that he believes will generate significant revenue for his government. These initiatives include, but are not limited to the following:
- To raise anywhere from $200 to $300 million dollars by auctioning off Alison Redford’s old undergarments. A Sotheby’s Auction House representative even pegs the $300 million goal as conservative. She claims that there are a number of people, mostly in Haiti and parts of northern Africa, who are interested in such garments for witchcraft and forms of black magic, and they are willing to pay top-dollar for items of this quality.
- To hold a $79,999 per plate Farewell Mr. Horner gala lunch at the 17th Ave SE Humpty’s location. Seeing as how popular the former Finance Minister’s departure is with Albertans across the province, this event is expected to raise at least $150 million. Some believe that visitors will fly in from as far as Vancouver for this expensive lunch.
- Since his government has not been able to sell the fleet of Alberta Government-owned private planes, Mr. Prentice plans to lease them to oil and gas executives who’s Lear Jets charter service benefit has been revoked in light of low oil prices. “These guys still have to live up to the image of being very, very, very well off, even in hard times,” Prentice adds.
- Although this idea might be a tough pill for BC Premier Clark to swallow, Mr. Prentice plans to call in all of the IOUs from Clark’s government, which he expects to total $3.4 billion if she comes through on all of them.
- The Alberta PCs also plan to sell advertising space on the inside and the outside of the legislature and associated buildings. Once this was announced, Kimberly Clark, the maker of the adult diaper brand Depends, and Lysol were quick to offer 4 times the asking advertising rates to have exclusive rights to all advertising spots. Mr. Prentice’s marketing advisor explained that, “They jumped at the opportunity and we accepted. And it’s a win-win considering how the people working here are in such a dirty and shitty business. We use Depends and Lysol ALL OF THE TIME!”
- Mr. Prentice will start a crowd-sourcing campaign to raise enough funds for he and Danielle Smith to write a book called, “50 Shades of Floor Crossing.” If written properly, with racy pictures, and a candid telling of lies and deceit in the upper rankings of the Alberta Wildrose Party, they expect this book to hit the New York Times Best Sellers list in no time, raking upwards of $90 million.
- The Alberta PCs will hold a special Dunk Tank the Think Tank event in West Edmonton Mall. This family-oriented spectacle will see all levels of PC government officials, including Ol’ Jimmy, along with big Oil and Gas CEOs field questions from the public as they sit on the dunk tank throne. If the person asking the question is not satisfied with the answer, he or she is allowed to walk up to the switch and push it by hand. What makes this Dunk Tank special, is that it is filled with a mixture of oilsands bitumen, 40 API sour oil, premium gasoline, and diesel fuel.
- Shortly after the Dunk Tank event, there will be a one hour beer garden just before the indoor fireworks start on the same location that held the dunking. OHS representative ares nervous about this scenario, but excited at the same time.
Political pundits across Canada are not convinced that Mr. Prentice’s initiatives will be able to raise the funding necessary to balance his government’s budget. But only time, and Mr. Prentices sheer will and unwavering determination, will tell. 2P News will be the first to report on Alberta’s 2015 budget as information becomes available.
When asked if she believes that Mr. Prentice is onto something with his budget plans, Susan McDoogleberry (of Edson, Alberta) remarked, “Mr. Prentice? Who’s that?”