Report From Parliament Hill:
Helping build stronger communities with the municipal infrastructure top-up
Bob Nault - MP, Kenora Riding
When we talk about infrastructure, it can mean several different things; from keeping our families safe to addressing the challenges of climate change, our investments in infrastructure are setting communities up for success. For a city, infrastructure might mean new subway lines, light rail transit technology, or sports centres. In rural areas like Northwestern Ontario, infrastructure often means a lot of different things like all-weather roads, community centres, and public playgrounds. The differences between urban infrastructure and rural infrastructure may seem large, yet both have the same end-goal: to create stronger communities.
Knowing how important infrastructure is, not only in the North, but right across the country, our government is investing in projects that create good jobs which lays the groundwork for strong communities and the continued growth of local and regional economies. We know how important municipalities are in this process, which is why we are making sure that they have the resources they need to continue developing healthy, sustainable communities.
The Municipal Infrastructure Top-Up, which was introduced in Budget 2019, doubled the amount of money that municipalities get through the gas tax transfer for 2018-19, and gave much needed support for local priorities. This $2.2 billion investment was made to ensure that infrastructure funding reached the hands of the people who understood what projects their communities needed - our local and municipal governments.
About a week ago, municipalities in the Kenora riding received the top-up in their bank account. This top-up doubles the amount of money for communities in the Kenora riding which will enable them to prioritize local infrastructure projects that support the well-being of their residents. This year alone, the annual allocation along with the additional top-up totals $4,711,392,00. This investment will help them decide what type of modern infrastructure they want to invest in for the 21st century.
Projects under the Municipal Infrastructure Top-Up can be used for a variety of purposes, but generally fall under three main priorities: first, productivity and economic growth – including highways and local roads, public transit, and regional and local airports. Second, clean environment – including drinking water, wastewater, and community energy systems, and finally, strong cities and communities – including sport and recreation, culture and tourism, and capacity building.
Our government has approved four times more infrastructure projects than the Harper government did in their last mandate and we will continue to listen to communities and invest in the infrastructure they need to thrive. While Conservative politicians may try to stall these critical projects from being developed, we will continue to work with municipalities to build the communities that support our growing economy and continue to make the even stronger.
The bottom line is that investing in infrastructure creates jobs and sets the stage for long-term economic growth that benefits everyone, while making our communities better places to live. To date, across the country, more than 48,000 infrastructure projects have been approved, and almost all are either underway, or already completed.
This funding will help communities throughout the riding build modern infrastructure for the 21st century to ensure that residents can maintain a high quality of life for generations to come.
The federal Gas Tax Fund investment will help stimulate economic growth in the North and will also ensure that Northerners enjoy a high quality of life for generations to come.
Municipalities who receive the Federal Top-up in the Kenora Riding: Kenora - $1,955,394.00, Dryden -$970,434.00, Sioux Lookout - $641,734.00, Sioux Narrows-Nestor Falls - $91,730.00, Red Lake - $594,976.00, Ear Falls - $130,716.00, Pickle Lake - $54,146.00, Machin - $119,122.00, Ignace - $153,140.00.
Grand total with one-time top-up: 2018-19 - $4,711,392,00.