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Tuesday, January 27, 2009

municipal pre-budget wish-lists.

In advance of today's Federal Budget release, Alberta's municipalities have prepared their wish-lists:

- City of Calgary:

In anticipation, Calgary has provided a list of projects that could be started within 120 days, ranging from a ordable housing to new LRT lines to green initiatives.

The city, which is spending $4 billion on capital projects over the next three years, has a much more expensive list that is unfunded.

- City of Edmonton:
Edmonton has identified $2.4 billion worth of projects that could start immediately if federal funding becomes available in Tuesday's budget.

These include the $825-million extension of the LRT from downtown to NAIT, $462
million for new buses and $50 million to revitalize 118th Avenue.
- City of Lethbridge:

Lethbridge Mayor Bob Tarleck echoed those sentiments, saying tax cuts are not the answer.

Instead, he said, the government needs to do something "sharply focused" on a short-term basis, such as labour intensive infrastructure programs.

Tarleck suggested the creation of affordable housing or retrofitting existing housing to make it more energy efficient, would help the economy and those living on the streets.

- Edmonton Mayor Stephen Mandel also joined other Big Cities Mayors in calling for accelerated infrastructure funding.

- The Alberta Urban Municipalities Association:
...(AUMA) is encouraged to learn that tomorrow’s federal budget will contain new dollars for infrastructure projects, including for green infrastructure, in time to fight the recession.

AUMA President Lloyd Bertschi says this commitment today by federal Infrastructure Minister John Baird, along with the federal government’s pledge to accelerate existing infrastructure funding, will create thousands of new jobs and speed up much-needed repairs to Alberta’s municipal infrastructure


Sean S. said...

even if the money went to these very deserving infrastructure programs, they simply won't get off the ground as long as the Feds expect the municipalities to kick in a 1/3 of the costs (throw the provinces 1/3 into the mix as well).

Bill Given said...

City of GP lets it's list go tomorrow, included will be the community energy system.

Details here:

James Bow said...

Sean S: that's the key: the money has to be offered without the matching funds requirement. And if the Feds only come up with a third of the cost, take the money and build the portions that it can cover.

It's for this reason the Ontario government has absolved the municipalities of its 1/3rd responsibility. And if the feds don't kick in their third, we'll continue on regardless, building what we can afford, at a slower pace.

MERBOY said...

RE: James Bow

I was watching Baird on Politics last nite (Monday - starting at 10:00)... and it really sounded like the new funds would require 1/3rd Federal, 1/3rd Provincial + 1/3rd Municipal... just like the existing fund that is being used quite slowly because most municipalities don't have room to fund 1/3rd.