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Federal Science minister says funding to post-secondary institutions needed

LEDUC, Alta. - Another federal government minister is suggesting that Alberta made the wrong move when it cut post-secondary school budgets.

Canada's Minister of State for Science and Technology, Greg Rickford, awarded a grant Friday to a welding company in Leduc, Alberta, for its work with University of Alberta students.

Rickford stressed that investment in post-secondary institutions is needed across the country.

"We have to remain focused on helping businesses. They create jobs and the partnerships with colleges universities help make sense of all of the investments that we continue to make," Rickford said.

"I would encourage our provincial counterparts in these regards to stay focused on these things."

Alberta's 26 post-secondary institutions have been cutting staff, programs, and services since the spring after Conservative Premier Alison Redford's government announced it was cutting $147 million, or seven per cent, of post-secondary budgets.

The cuts came despite Redford's election promise to hike spending for post-secondary schools.

Last week, the province restored $50 million to post-secondary institutions.

Federal Finance Minister Jim Flaherty said in his fiscal update this week that the $147 million the Alberta government cut to post-secondary education was "unwise."

The province has since restored $50 million to post-secondary institutions.


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