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NWT cabinet shuffled

Mike W. Bryant
Northern News Services

Yellowknife (Mar 21/05) - There were few surprises in a cabinet shuffle announced by Premier Joe Handley, March 17.

Only two cabinet ministers saw any significant changes to their existing portfolios, most notably Charles Dent who traded in Justice for the NWT Worker's Compensation Board.

Dent faced mounting criticism from regular MLAs in recent months for his handling of several controversies involving the Justice department, including job cutbacks, and staff grievances at the North Slave Correctional Centre. Handley said Dent's problems in the legislative assembly had little to do with his decision to remove him from Justice.

"One of the things I wanted to do was distribute the workload more equitably," said Handley.

"Mr. Dent has had a tremendously big workload with the second largest department - the largest department in terms of mandates - as well as the Department of Justice."

Dent will keep Education, Culture and Employment, plus gain responsibilities for the Worker's Compensation Board from David Krutko.

The only other significant change on cabinet was the splitting of the Resources, Wildlife, and Economic Development portfolio.

Brendan Bell gains Justice and will keep the Industry, Technology, and Investment division of RWED, while giving up Environment to Health and Social Services Minister Michael Miltenberger.

Changing Portfolios

Premier Joe Handley:

Floyd Roland:

Charles Dent:

Brendan Bell:

Michael Miltenberger:

Michael McLeod:

David Krutko: