Saskatchewan adds new secretary for farm irrigation

A rookie MLA in the Saskatchewan Party caucus has been promoted to a legislative secretary post with responsibility for expansion of the province’s farm irrigation systems.

Premier Brad Wall on Tuesday named Warren Kaeding, the MLA for Melville-Saltcoats since April, as legislative secretary to the minister of agriculture, for irrigation expansion.

Kaeding was previously a business development rep for canola producer financing firm Input Capital and served as executive director for the Saskatchewan Farm Stewardship Association. He also ran Wagon Wheel Seed Corp. for 25 years, until 2011, and worked as a territory manager for Hoechst for 10 years, until 1996.

Kaeding’s appointment, one of eight new legislative secretary posts, comes as part of a shuffle of Wall’s cabinet, although Agriculture Minister Lyle Stewart and three other ministers keep their current portfolios.

Among other portfolios of interest to farmers, Rosthern-Shellbrook MLA Scott Moe becomes environment minister and minister responsible for SaskWater and the Saskatchewan Water Security Agency, a portfolio he previously handled for about a year in 2014-15.

In those portfolios, Moe replaces Battlefords MLA Herb Cox, who announced Aug. 12 he had asked to leave cabinet in this shuffle, as he begins stem cell treatment for cancer. Cox will continue in his role as MLA.

Carrot River Valley MLA Fred Bradshaw was named Tuesday serve as a legislative secretary to Moe, with responsibility for forestry and wildfire management.

Wall’s shuffle cuts the size of his cabinet by one member to 17 ministers, a move he said will save taxpayers about $450,000 a year.

Legislative secretaries serve as assistants to ministers, often on specific files. While Saskatchewan cabinet ministers receive additional allowances of $48,969 per year, on top of their basic MLA indemnity of $96,183, secretaries’ additional allowances run at $14,311 per year. — AGCanada.com Network

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