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58th New Brunswick Legislature

58th New Brunswick Legislature
Majority parliament
Parliament leaders
PremierBrian Gallant
Leader of the
Bruce Fitch
Blaine Higgs
Party caucuses
GovernmentLiberal Party
OppositionProgressive Conservative Party
Third partyGreen Party
Legislative Assembly
Seating arrangements of the Legislative Assembly
Members49 MLA seats
MonarchElizabeth II
6 February 1952 – present
Jocelyne Roy-Vienneau
23 October 2014 – present
<57th 59th>

The 58th New Brunswick Legislative Assembly was created following a general election in 2014 and dissolved on August 23, 2018 for the new general election.


Lieutenant Governor Jocelyne Roy-Vienneau was installed October 23, 2014.

Speaker Chris Collins was elected October 24, 2014 and served for the duration of the legislature.

Premier of New Brunswick Brian Gallant (Liberal) led the Government for the duration of the legislature.

Leader of the Opposition Blaine Higgs (Progressive Conservative) led the Official Opposition from fall 2016 until the end of the legislature. Higgs was preceded by the interim leader of his party Bruce Fitch.


On 1 December 2015, the Gallant government opened the legislature's second session with a promise to "get tough" on the province's tattered finances. The speech from the throne documented how the province had accumulated a debt of $12.4 billion by failing to produce a balanced budget since 2007. The province spent more on interest payments than it did on post-secondary education, and the consultation of citizens called the "Strategic Program Review" had all but concluded. The province said its credit rating was at risk, and the costs to service the debt if the rating were downgraded would then rise. The projected deficit for the 2015-16 budget was at the time $453 million. A report issued the previous Friday had calculated at $300 million the benefit to the government of a two-percent rise of the harmonized sales tax (HST) from 13% to 15%.[1]

On 2 December 2015, it was brought to light that the province's Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Eilish Cleary had been obliged by her Deputy Minister to go "on leave". She said she was not allowed to discuss the reasons for the leave. "I was surprised and upset when it happened. The whole situation has caused me significant stress and anxiety. And not being able to talk about it makes it worse." Her office had been "developing a plan to further explore" the carcinogenic effects of glyphosate, a substance which was found earlier in 2015 to be "probably carcinogenic to humans" by the International Agency for Research on Cancer, a branch of the World Health Organization, and which is utilized in New Brunswick by forestry company J.D. Irving Ltd. and by NB Power, a provincial Crown corporation. Victor Boudreau, the Minister of Health at the time, told reporters Cleary's leave was "a personnel matter. It's not something we can comment about. It has nothing to do with the office per se, or the independence of the office. It's an HR issue and I won't comment anymore."[2] The next day, the Deputy Minister of Health, Tom Maston, rejected suggestions that Cleary was being silenced, and the Minister of Environment was questioned on the matter in the legislature. The leader of the opposition said that there was a "disturbing" trend of the Gallant Liberals trying to silence independent watchdogs, and pointed to the ruling party's recent feud with the Auditor-General and failure to appoint a new conflict of interest commissioner for six months.[3] On 7 December, Cleary—who had been removed from her office on 2 November—stated in an e-mail that she had been fired by the provincial government without cause: "I can confirm that my employment as Chief Medical Officer has been terminated without cause effective immediately." The government did not respond to requests for information, while various opposition politicians made hay and a public protest ensued in support of Cleary.[4] The next day, the Liberal government was grilled in question period. The Minister of Health maintained that the termination without cause was due to a personnel matter, while Cleary maintained that she was never told what the personnel issues were.[5][6] On 15 January 2016, Cleary and her employer of nine years reached a settlement, which was not disclosed to the public. A statement was released, that "Dr. Cleary and the Department of Health have concluded a satisfactory agreement consistent with common law termination without cause principles."[7]

In their 2016 budget, presented by Finance Minister Roger Melanson on 2 February 2016,[8] the Liberal party increased, as forecast the previous December, the HST from 13% to 15%, effective 1 July 2016.[9][10][11]

Cathy Rogers became the first female finance minister of the province in a cabinet shuffle that occurred on 6 June 2016.[12] As well, Lisa Harris was appointed minister of Celtic affairs, a newly established cabinet post.[13][12] Francine Landry continued as Minister for La Francophonie, while Victor Boudreau continued as Minister of Health.[12][13] Brian Kenny replaced Serge Rousselle as the education minister, while the latter takes over at Environment and Local Government.[14][15] Rousselle, who remains in post as Attorney-General, is the only lawyer in cabinet, apart from Gallant.[12]

Rogers was only in her second week in post when the Canada Pension Plan (CPP) file exploded into acrimony. On 20 June 2016, Federal Minister of Finance Bill Morneau and eight of his provincial colleagues announced jointly that the CPP would become more expensive.[16] The announcement was hailed as Ontario premier Kathleen Wynne's victory, since it would allow her to cancel the new provincial plan on which she had campaigned.[17] The increase by one percentage point to 5.95 per cent of wages shall take place from 2019 to 2025.[18] Rogers was pilloried in the provincial press and earned the ire of the Coalition of New Brunswick Employers, an alliance of 25 industry associations employing about two-thirds of the province's private-sector workforce.[19]

On 2 November 2016, the Gallant government issued a speech from the Throne, its second in a year, and said that its contentious amendment to the Judicature Act, which would give to the government the power of veto over certain personnel decisions that theretofore had lain with the Chief Justice of the Queen's Bench, was to be revived. It had been allowed to fall off the order paper when the legislature wrapped up without its passage. Chief Justice David Smith earlier had challenged the authority of the Premier to implement his plan.[20]

The Gallant government raised the ire of senior citizens with its plans to require access to confidential Revenue Canada files in exchange for those who sought social assistance. Cecile Cassista, the executive director of the Coalition for Seniors and Nursing Home Residents, saw it as "nothing more than another attempt by government to grab seniors' assets".[21] Two days later, the Gallant government, in the person of Stephen Horsman, climbed down and pledged to rewrite the legislation.[22]


Most of the current members were elected at the general election on September 22, 2014, Progressive Conservative Glen Savoie was elected at a November 17, 2014 by-election.

Name Party Riding First elected Notes
  Brian Keirstead Progressive Conservative Albert 2014 g.e. Environment Critic
  Denis Landry Liberal Bathurst East-Nepisiguit-Saint-Isidore 1995 g.e. Natural Resources Minister; Human Resources Minister
  Brian Kenny Liberal Bathurst West-Beresford 2003 g.e. Environment and Local Government Minister
  Donald Arseneault Liberal Campbellton-Dalhousie 2003 g.e. Energy and Mines Minister
  Hédard Albert Liberal Caraquet 2003 g.e. Government House Leader; Chief Government Whip
  David Alward Progressive Conservative Carleton 1999 g.e. Agriculture, Aquaculture and Fisheries Critic
  Stewart Fairgrieve Progressive Conservative 2015 by-e.
  Andrew Harvey Liberal Carleton-Victoria 2014 g.e.
  Carl Urquhart Progressive Conservative Carleton-York 2006 g.e. Opposition Whip
  John Ames Liberal Charlotte-Campobello 2014 g.e.
  Roger Melanson Liberal Dieppe 2010 g.e. Finance Minister; Transportation and Infrastructure Minister
  Madeleine Dubé Progressive Conservative Edmundston-Madawaska Centre 1999 g.e. Opposition House Leader; Health Critic
  Pam Lynch Progressive Conservative Fredericton-Grand Lake 2010 g.e. Opposition Caucus Chair
  Stephen Horsman Liberal Fredericton North 2014 g.e. Deputy Premier; Public Safety Minister; Justice Minister
  David Coon Green Fredericton South 2014 g.e. Third Party Leader
  Brian Macdonald Progressive Conservative Fredericton West-Hanwell 2010 g.e. Government Services Critic
  Kirk MacDonald Progressive Conservative Fredericton-York 1999 g.e. Economic Development Critic
  Rick Doucet Liberal Fundy-The Isles-Saint John West 2003 g.e. Economic Development Minister; Agriculture, Aquaculture and Fisheries Minister
  Ross Wetmore Progressive Conservative Gagetown-Petitcodiac 2010 g.e. Tourism, Heritage and Culture Critic
     Gary Crossman Progressive Conservative Hampton 2014 g.e. Education Critic
  Bertrand LeBlanc Liberal Kent North 2010 g.e.
  Benoît Bourque Liberal Kent South 2014 g.e.
  Bill Oliver Progressive Conservative Kings Centre 2014 g.e. Natural Resources Critic
  Francine Landry Liberal Madawaska les Lacs-Edmundston 2014 g.e. Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour Critic
  Bernard LeBlanc Liberal Memramcook-Tantramar 2006 g.e. Deputy Speaker
  Bill Fraser Liberal Miramichi 2006 g.e. Tourism, Heritage and Culture Minister
  Lisa Harris Liberal Miramichi Bay-Neguac 2014 g.e. Deputy Speaker
  Chris Collins Liberal Moncton Centre 2007 by-e. Speaker
  Monique LeBlanc Liberal Moncton East 2014 g.e. Government Caucus Chair
  Ernie Steeves Progressive Conservative Moncton Northwest 2014 g.e. Social Development Critic
  Cathy Rogers Liberal Moncton South 2014 g.e. Social Development Minister; Healthy and Inclusive Communities Minister
  Sherry Wilson Progressive Conservative Moncton Southwest 2010 g.e. Local Government Critic; Health and Inclusive Communities Critic
  Jeff Carr Progressive Conservative New Maryland-Sunbury 2014 g.e. Transportation and Infrastructure Critic
  Jody Carr Progressive Conservative Oromocto-Lincoln 1999 g.e.
  Trevor Holder Progressive Conservative Portland-Simonds 1999 g.e. Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour Critic
  Blaine Higgs Progressive Conservative Quispamsis 2010 g.e. Opposition Leader & Finance Critic
  Daniel Guitard Liberal Restigouche-Chaleur 2014 g.e. Government Deputy Whip
  Gilles LePage Liberal Restigouche West 2014 g.e.
  Bruce Fitch Progressive Conservative Riverview 2003 g.e.
  Ted Flemming Progressive Conservative Rothesay 2012 by-e. Justice Critic; Shadow Attorney General
  Gary Keating Liberal Saint John East 2014 g.e. Resigned October 14, 2014
  Glen Savoie Progressive Conservative 2010 g.e. Elected in by-election on November 17, 2014.
  Ed Doherty Liberal Saint John Harbour 2005 by-e. Government Services Minister
  Dorothy Shephard Progressive Conservative Saint John Lancaster 2010 g.e. Human Resources Critic
  Brian Gallant Liberal Shediac Bay-Dieppe 2013 by-e. Premier
  Victor Boudreau Liberal Shediac-Beaubassin-Cap-Pelé 2004 by-e. Health Minister
  Wilfred Roussel Liberal Shippagan-Lamèque-Miscou 2014 g.e.
  Jake Stewart Progressive Conservative Southwest Miramichi-Bay du Vin 2010 g.e. Energy and Mines Critic
  Bruce Northrup Progressive Conservative Sussex-Fundy-St. Martins 2006 g.e. Public Safety Critic
  Serge Rousselle Liberal Tracadie-Sheila 2014 g.e. Education and Early Childhood Development Minister; Attorney General
  Chuck Chiasson Liberal Victoria-la-Vallée 2014 g.e.

Standings changes in the 58th Assembly

Number of members
per party by date
2014 2015 2017 2018
September 22 October 14 November 17 May 22 October 5 November 30 May 10 July 1
  Liberal 27 26 25 24
  Progressive Conservative 21 22 21 22 21
  Green 1
  Independent 0 1
Total members 49 48 49 48 49 48 47
Vacant 0 1 0 1 0 1 2
Government Majority 3 2 1 0 1
Membership changes in the 58th Assembly
Date Name District Party Reason
  September 22, 2014 See List of Members Election day of the 2014 New Brunswick general election
  October 14, 2014 Gary Keating Saint John East Liberal Resigned for personal reasons
     November 17, 2014 Glen Savoie Progressive Conservative By-election
  May 22, 2015 David Alward Carleton Progressive Conservative Resigned after being named consul general to Boston
     October 5, 2015 Stewart Fairgrieve Progressive Conservative By-election
  November 30, 2017 Donald Arseneault Campbellton-Dalhousie Liberal Resigned
  May 10, 2018 Chris Collins Moncton Centre Independent Left Liberal Party due to disagreement over handling of harassment allegations
  July 1, 2018 Madeleine Dubé Edmundston-Madawaska Centre Progressive Conservative Resigned to accept appointment as vice-rector of the Université de Moncton

See also


  1. ^ "New Brunswick throne speech warns of looming get-tough budget". The Globe and Mail. Toronto. 1 December 2015. Retrieved 11 June 2016.
  2. ^ "Dr. Eilish Cleary studying glyphosate when put on leave", 2 Dec 2015
  3. ^ "Eilish Cleary not on leave to force silence: deputy minister", 3 Dec 2015
  4. ^ "Dr. Eilish Cleary says she was fired by the Gallant government", 7 Dec 2015
  5. ^ "Dr. Eilish Cleary's firing 'not politically motivated,' Liberals say", 8 Dec 2015
  6. ^ "Reaction and speculation grows one day after Dr. Eilish Cleary fired", 8 Dec 2015
  7. ^ "Dr. Eilish Cleary, province reach settlement", 15 Jan 2016
  8. ^ "Roger Melanson hikes HST, cuts bureaucracy in Liberal budget", 2 Feb 2016
  9. ^ "Harmonized Sales Tax (HST)"
  10. ^ "TRANSITIONAL RULES FOR THE NEW BRUNSWICK HST RATE INCREASE" Archived 2016-05-31 at the Wayback Machine, 30 Mar 2016
  11. ^ "New Brunswick budget: tax hikes, civil service cuts, no new highway tolls", 2 Feb 2016
  12. ^ a b c d Poitras, Jacques (6 June 2016). "Cabinet shuffle adds 2 new faces and moves all but 2 members". CBC News New Brunswick. Retrieved 11 June 2016.
  13. ^ a b "New Brunswick cabinet shuffle includes female finance minister, Celtic Affairs post". Global News. Canadian Press. 6 June 2016. Retrieved 11 June 2016.
  14. ^ "Full list of Brian Gallant's new cabinet", 6 Jun 2016
  15. ^ "Who’s what after New Brunswick cabinet shuffle", 6 Jun 2016
  16. ^ "Canada’s Finance Ministers Agree to Strengthen Canada Pension Plan", 20 Jun 2016
  17. ^ "Keeping ORPP going while awaiting CPP news was ‘worth the cost,’ Wynne says", 21 Jun 2016
  18. ^ "A new premium on retirement", 22 Jun 2016
  19. ^ "'Failure' to consult on CPPP hike draws business backlash", 23 Jun 2016, SJTJ
  20. ^ SJTJ, pA1 3 Nov 2016: "Premier says judges bill back on table" (Huras)
  21. ^ SJTJ 21 Nov 2016 pA1: "Seniors prepare to battle Grits over personal assets" (Scott-Wallace)
  22. ^ SJTJ 23 Nov 2016 pA1: "Liberals rewrite divisive seniors bill"
Preceded by
57th Assembly
New Brunswick Legislative Assemblies
Succeeded by
59th Assembly