Sask. cabinet shuffled; Stewart new ag minister

Saskatchewan premier Brad Wall has named Thunder Creek MLA Lyle Stewart as the province’s new agriculture minister.

In a major cabinet shuffle, the first since last fall’s election, the premier brought in seven new people, including three rookies and four who had been out of cabinet for a while.

A new agriculture minister was a certainty because Bob Bjornerud, minister since 2007, said in March he would leave cabinet when the next shuffle occurred.

Stewart farms and raises cattle near Pense, 25 kilometres west of Regina. He has been an MLA since 1999 and previously served in cabinet as minister of enterprise and innovation.

Only two ministers retained their existing portfolios: Ken Krawetz remains deputy premier and finance minister and June Draude stays as minister of social services and minister responsible for the status of women.

Wall also reorganized government to create a ministry of the economy, led by Bill Boyd. Tim McMillan will be responsible for energy and resources, tourism and trade under Boyd, as well as SaskEnergy.

The premier said he considered putting agriculture within that ministry as well but decided it should stand alone.

Out of cabinet are Bjornerud, Yogi Huyghebeart, Darryl Hicke, Bill Hutchinson, Laura Ross, Rob Norris and Jeremy Harrison.

Harrison will retain his duties as government house leader. Norris will serve as legislative secretary for First Nations engagement.

Greg Ottenbreit becomes whip and Gene Makowsky is deputy whip.

Wayne Elhard remains provincial secretary.

The 18-member cabinet, with former responsibilities if applicable in brackets, include:

Wall — premier, president of executive council, minister of intergovernmental affairs

Krawetz — deputy premier, finance

Boyd — economy, responsible for global transportation hub and SaskPower

Draude — social services, status of women

Don McMorris — highways and infrastructure, SaskTel, STC, Information Services Corp., Sask. Gaming Corp. (health)

Don Morgan — advanced education, labour relations and workplace safety; Workers’ Compensation Board (justice and attorney general)

Donna Harpauer — Crown Investments, SGI, Sask. Liquor and Gaming Authority (education)

Dustin Duncan — health (environment and water)

Gordon Wyant — justice and attorney general, deputy government house leader

Tim McMillan — energy and resources, tourism, trade, SaskEnergy (crown investments)

Ken Cheveldayoff — environment and water (First Nations)

Jim Reiter — government relations, First Nations, Metis and Northern Affairs (highways and infrastructure)

Russ Marchuk — education

Stewart — agriculture and Sask. Crop Insurance Corp.

Nancy Heppner — central services, public service commission, Lean initiative

Christine Tell — corrections and policing

Randy Weekes — rural and remote health

Kevin Doherty — parks, culture and sport, provincial capital commission

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