Minister Denis Lebel confirms Harper Government's record infrastructure investment will boost Canadian communities
Vancouver, British Columbia, June 1, 2013 – The Honourable Denis Lebel, Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities, Minister of the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec and Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, today discussed how Canadian communities from coast to coast to coast will be stronger as a result of the Harper Government's new infrastructure investments, at the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) Annual Conference and Trade Show.
"Our Government recognizes that investments in Canada's public infrastructure create jobs, economic growth and provide a high quality of life for families in every city and community across the country," said Minister Lebel.
"In our Economic Action Plan 2013, we delivered the longest and largest commitment to job-creating infrastructure funding in Canadian history."
Economic Action Plan 2013 builds on the Harper Government's investments and includes the $53 billion New Building Canada Plan to build roads, bridges, subways, commuter rail, and other public infrastructure in cooperation with provinces, territories, and municipalities over 10 years, starting in 2014-15.
The new Building Canada plan has three main components:
- Community Improvement Fund - $32.2 billion consisting of an indexed Gas Tax Fund and the increased GST Rebate for Municipalities to build roads, public transit, recreational facilities and other community infrastructure across Canada that will improve the quality of life of Canadian families.
- New Building Canada Fund - $14 billion in support of major economic infrastructure projects that have a national and regional significance.
- Renewed P3 Canada Fund - $1.25 billion to continue finding innovative ways to build infrastructure projects faster and provide better value for Canadian taxpayers through public-private partnerships.
The new plan, which follows extensive consultations with the FCM and other stakeholders, will take effect following the conclusion of the original Building Canada program at the end of the current fiscal year.
"We will not miss a construction season," Lebel said.
Minister Lebel also noted that the federal Gas Tax Fund transfer – a vital part of the infrastructure plan – respects municipal decision making around infrastructure. So far, more than one-quarter of the Fund – a total of $2 billion – has been provided to public transit projects, and in five of Canada's largest cities, all or nearly all of the Gas Tax transfer goes toward public transit. Other municipalities have different local priorities. For example, more than 10 per cent of the Gas Tax Fund transfer has been used for wastewater projects.
"We have a flexible plan that lets local councils set local priorities," he said.
"We will not impose a made-in-Ottawa solution."
Since 2006, the Harper Government has made unprecedented investments in over 43,000 projects to build roads, bridges, commuter rail and other important public infrastructure and has invested over $5 billion in direct contribution funding to public transit projects across the country. The New Building Canada Plan, combined with other federal infrastructure investments, supports Canada's infrastructure advantage, which is a key enabler of economic growth and job creation.
For additional information about investments in infrastructure and to stay up-to-date with Web feeds, visit Infrastructure Canada.
For further information about Canada's Economic Action Plan, visit Canada's Economic Action Plan.
Read the Minister's speech.
For additional information, please contact:
Office of the Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities, Minister of the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec and Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs
Toll free: 1-877-250-7154
The New Building Canada Plan
$53 billion for provincial, territorial and municipal infrastructure, including over $47 billion in new funding, over the next 10 years
Economic Action Plan 2013 delivers a New Building Canada Plan to build roads, bridges, subways, commuter rail, and other public infrastructure in cooperation with provinces, territories, and municipalities.
The new Building Canada plan includes:
- The Gas Tax Fund ($21.8 billion)
- which would now be indexed; and
- which would now give municipalities greater flexibility to spend federal funding on a broader range of infrastructure priorities.
- An incremental Goods and Services Tax Rebate for Municipalities ($10.4 billion).
- A new Building Canada Fund with two components:
- A $4-billion, merit-based, National Infrastructure Component to support investments in projects of national significance, particularly those that support job creation, economic growth and productivity.
- A $10-billion Provincial-Territorial Infrastructure Component that would support projects of national, regional and local significance across the country in a broader range of categories. This component would include base funding for each province and territory.
- An additional $1.25 billion in funding for P3 Canada, which would continue to be administered by PPP Canada Inc.
The new plan will encourage greater involvement of the private sector in the provision of public infrastructure and ensure better value for taxpayers. Projects with capital costs of over $100 million under the new Building Canada Fund would be subject to a P3 screen to determine whether better value for money can be achieved through P3 procurement.
The Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities will work with stakeholders on outstanding program parameters for the new Building Canada Fund and will announce details later this year. In the meantime, we will continue to work with our partners and stakeholders to deliver funding under our existing programs.
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