Premier Brad Wall has announced that Bill 40 will be repealed.
In a video posted to social media Tuesday, Wall announced the piece of legislation is being scrapped. Bill 40 was introduced in the spring and would allow for the sale of up to 49 per cent of a Crown corporation.
“Saskatchewan, we’ve heard you,” Wall said. “Here at the legislature, in the throne speech, we’ll confirm that our government is repealing Bill 40.”
Bill 40 was unpopular because it not just defined what privatisation meant, but allowed for any potential sale of a Crown corporation without a referendum.
At the time, the Saskatchewan New Democratic Party called it a “betrayal,” and unions across the province were concerned about the future of the provincially-owned companies.
It was a sentiment echoed by many voters and in Tuesday’s video, Wall maintained the government had been listening.
“Thank you very much for your very direct feedback to the government,” Wall said.
Not only are the plans for Bill 40 now known, but Wall also hinted in a pre-session scrum with reporters that the planned decrease in the corporate income tax rate may not happen.
Those exact details will be revealed in the speech from the throne, which is read at the legislature Wednesday afternoon.
NDP interim leader reacts
The NDP said the Bill 40 change of heart is all a little too late from the government having voted for the law in the spring.
“It took the premier 363 days to listen to the people of the province,” interim leader Nicole Sarauer said.
Along with Saskatchewan’s big unions, the NDP had organized rallies, campaigns and a petition to stop bill 40 and fight what they saw was wholesale privatization.
“The people of Saskatchewan deserve a government that is working for them, not one that is working to save the Premier’s personal legacy so he can ride off into the sunset,” Sarauer added.