POP: Funding Program for Infrastructure Renewal
Res #: POP 9-14A
Responses Received: No
Departments: Saskatchewan Ministry of Government Relations
WHEREAS both urban and rural municipalities across the province have significant infrastructure deficits; and
WHEREAS municipalities across the province are facing barriers to growth including a lack of infrastructure needed to accommodate growth; and
WHEREAS good quality infrastructure is vital to the health and wellness of residents and to the livability, economic vibrancy, growth of municipalities across the province and
WHEREAS municipalities across the province have limited revenue generating opportunities;
BE IT RESOLVED that SARM strongly encourage the Province to develop and implement an intentional and strategic infrastructure renewal and growth funding program that is ongoing, sustainable, and predictable; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that such a funding program be developed and ready for implementation no later than the budget of 2015.
MINISTRY OF GOVERNMENT RELATIONS' RESPONSE
For 2014-15, Municipal Revenue Sharing is $256.979M, which represents an increase of 102 percent from the 2007-08 levels. Given this rate of increase in revenue sharing, it is government's expectation that municipalities will have more funding for infrastructure costs.
Canada's Economic Action Plan 2013 announced the delivery of a New Building Canada Fund (NBCF) to build public infrastructure in cooperation with provinces, territories and municipalities. The province has been allocated $437M over a ten year period under the NBCF- Provincial Territorial Infrastructure Component. In addition, funding across Canada will be available through the $48 National Infrastructure Component, which is a merit based program focusing on projects that contribute to Canada's long term economic growth and prosperity, which Saskatchewan will also participate in.
As the Premier has said, the Government of Saskatchewan is ready and committed to assisting municipalities with their infrastructure deficit and will continue to work with our stakeholders to invest in Saskatchewan's communities.
The road to addressing the infrastructure deficit in our province is a long one; the recent funding announcement by the federal government is a step down that road.
Federal and provincial officials need to discuss the parameters under the NBCF and the federal government officials need to seek Federal Treasury Board approval of the terms and conditions for the programs.
As well, negotiation continues with Infrastructure Canada on the renewed Gas Tax Fund agreement, and it is expected to be finalized in the coming weeks. Saskatchewan's allocation for 2014-15 is $56.3M, with a total of $292.7M over the first five years of the new program from 2014-15 to 2018-19. New categories have been added to the renewed agreement, so it is expected that municipalities will have greater opportunities to utilize their funding for municipal infrastructure.