Haliburton-Kawartha Lakes-Brock MP Jamie Schmale is taking over the portfolio of Crown-Indigenous Relations.

“It’s a great opportunity,” Schmale tells the MyHaliburtonNow.com newsroom. He previously held the Shadow Cabinet position under former Conservative Party leader Andrew Scheer.

Current party leader Erin O’Toole moved him to this role after its previous holder Kamloops-Thompson-Cariboo MP Cathy McLeod announced she would not be running in the next federal election. “He didn’t want to put someone new to it or had to really take their time getting up to speed,” Schmale says of O’Toole’s decision hand him the portfolio.

He had been holding the position of the Shadow Minister for Families, Children and Social Development.

Schmale says that he will continue to make his riding his number one priority. “Any politician worth their salt remembers that it is the people in their riding that got them to where they are,” he says.

“I’ll try to keep being as accessible as possible,” Schmale says.