Prince Albert Carlton MLA Joe Hargrave announces he won’t seek re-election, steps down as cabinet minister

MLA Joe Hargrave at a previous event. (Herald file photo)

Prince Albert Carlton will have a new MLA following the next election after Joe Hargrave announced he would not seek another term in office.

Hargrave made the announcement Monday morning. He was originally acclaimed as the PA Carlton candidate in November 2023.

“My family and I have given this a lot of consideration and have decided I just can’t commit to another four years as MLA,” Hargrave said in a statement. “I want to thank my family, friends, and most importantly, the constituents of Prince Albert Carlton for your support over the past eight years. It has been an honour to serve you and to serve with Premier Moe and all my caucus colleagues.”

The Saskatchewan Party said it would nominate a new candidate “in the coming weeks.”

Hargrave also stepped down as Minister of SaskBuilds and Procurement. Warman MLA Terry Jenson will replace him. This is Jenson’s first time in cabinet.

“Joe has decided not to run again in this fall’s election and has asked to step away from his ministerial role,” Premier Scott Moe said in a press release. “He has played a key role in helping advance some of the most significant capital projects we have seen in our province’s history and I thanked him for his service and leadership.”

The move was one of three made on Monday. The biggest involves Highways Minister Lori Carr, who replaced Jeremy Harrison as Government House Leader. In the other change, Corrections, Policing, and Public Safety Minister Paul Merriman was named Deputy House Leader.

Hargrave was the owner/operator of Riverside Auto Group in Prince Albert and served as a manager with BMO and a corrections officer before entering provincial politics. He was first elected in the 2016 provincial election, then re-elected in 2020.

Hargrave served in a number of portfolios during his time in office, most recently as Minister of SaskBuilds and Procurement and Minister responsible for the GTH and Provincial Archives of Saskatchewan.

He also served as Minister of Highways before resigning the position in 2021 following complaints about a trip he took to California to prepare to sell a piece of property during the COVID-19 outbreak.

The Saskatchewan Party has 28 of 48 candidates nominated. Hargrave is the 14th sitting MLA who is not seeking re-election.