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Airdrie politician voted one of the hardest working MPs

By: Sara Wilson

  |  Posted: Thursday, May 22, 2014 10:13 am

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Wild Rose MP Blake Richards was selected as the Best Constituency MP in The Hill Times 22nd annual Politically Savvy Survey, on May 20.

Richards was also named the Conservative government’s hardest working MP, finishing second overall in that category.

The 22nd annual Politically Savvy Survey was conducted for The Hill Times by Forum Research Inc. between April 15 and May 6.

“I was humbled to learn the results; there are so many MP’s who work long hours on behalf of their constituents,” said Richards.

“It certainly is an honour to be recognized in this national survey.”

Richards was first elected to the House of Commons on Oct. 14, 2008, receiving the largest majority in the history of the constituency.

He was re-elected on May 2, 2011, with an even larger majority.

Richards, in his second term for the Wild Rose riding, is chair of the Parliamentary Tourism Caucus, serves on the House Public Safety and National Security committee as well as the committee on Procedure and House Affairs.

The Airdrie resident also accompanied Prime Minister Stephen Harper on his inaugural trip to the Middle East in January.

In October 2011, Richards introduced Private Member’s Bill C-309 in the House of Commons, and guided it through the House of Commons and Senate, it received Royal Assent in June of 2013. As a result, it is now a Criminal Code offence to wear a mask or to otherwise conceal one’s identity during a riot or an unlawful assembly.

In 2010, Richards spearheaded a national petition that called for changes to the national pardons system after it was revealed that convicted sex offender Graham James had received a pardon in 2007 for his offences.

The petition attracted thousands of supporters from across Canada and in June 2010, Bill C-23A, a new law to limit pardons for serious crimes, received Royal Assent.

According to Richards, he focuses his attention on community engagement, hosting regular meetings as well as a variety of consultations across the constituency.

“We certainly have a large and diverse riding. I spend as much time as possible gathering input from people across our riding so that when I am in Ottawa or elsewhere on government business, I can continue to represent their interests,” he said.

Richards’ annual Rocky Mountain Hockey Challenge charity event has raised more than $280,000 for Victims Services and recently received a $10,000 contribution from Concentra Financial.

See related story on page 16.


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