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FCM’s programs and advocacy help secure new tools that empower municipalities to build stronger communities of all sizes. Explore below to find out what’s new with us. 

Municipal Guide to Cannabis Legalization

Municipal Guide to Cannabis Legalization

Published: April 2018 - PDF (1.2 MB)

Municipal Guide to Cannabis Legalization

A roadmap for Canadian local governments

Canadians care about the impact of cannabis legalization and municipal governments will be the first place they turn to if they have concerns. Developing the rules and processes that will govern the legalization of non-medical cannabis is a complex task. Municipalities will need to make critical decisions about how and when to write new bylaws on a range of issues including land use planning, business licensing and public consumption.

FCM designed the Municipal Guide to Cannabis Legalization to provide an overview of the work ahead for local governments and offer both policy and regulatory options to choose from. It will take coordinated effort from all orders of government to ensure that Canadians are safe and well-served during the process of cannabis legalization. This guide can help communities get it right.

Municipal Guide to Cannabis Legalization

Municipal Guide to Cannabis Legalization

Published: April 2018 - PDF (1.2 MB)

Municipal Guide to Cannabis Legalization

A roadmap for Canadian local governments

Canadians care about the impact of cannabis legalization and municipal governments will be the first place they turn to if they have concerns. Developing the rules and processes that will govern the legalization of non-medical cannabis is a complex task. Municipalities will need to make critical decisions about how and when to write new bylaws on a range of issues including land use planning, business licensing and public consumption.

FCM designed the Municipal Guide to Cannabis Legalization to provide an overview of the work ahead for local governments and offer both policy and regulatory options to choose from. It will take coordinated effort from all orders of government to ensure that Canadians are safe and well-served during the process of cannabis legalization. This guide can help communities get it right.

Roll of Honour

FCM honours the true difference-makers of local government with our Roll of Honour Awards. These awards pays tribute to FCM officers, and to officials of member municipalities and municipal associations who have made an outstanding contribution to FCM and to municipal government in Canada. You can read more about eligibility criteria here.

Pam McConnell

2018 Recipient — Pam McConnell

Ms. McConnell served on Metro Toronto Council from 1994 to 1998 and on Toronto City Council from 1998 until her passing in 2017. A dedicated advocate for affordable housing and poverty reduction, Ms. McConnell brought tremendous energy and wisdom to her work in Toronto, across Canada, and internationally. Known for her leadership within FCM to promote women's participation in municipal government across Canada and around the world, Ms. McConnell's work paved the way for women leaders in our cities and communities and accelerated efforts to break the glass ceiling.

Some of Ms. McConnell's most significant work at FCM was as a founding member of the Standing Committee on Increasing Women's Participation in Municipal Government. Through this committee, her efforts were instrumental in forming the action plan to encourage and support women seeking municipal office and in the creation of materials and programs being implemented across the country.

Past recipients

2017

  • Hazel McCallion — former Mayor, Mississauga, ON
  • Brad Woodside — former Mayor, Fredericton, NB; former FCM President
  • Russ Powers — former Councillor, Dundas, ON, and Hamilton, ON; former President, Association of Municipalities of Ontario; former FCM Director
  • Debra Button — former Councillor and Mayor, Weyburn, SK; former President, Saskatchewan Urban Municipalities Association; former FCM director
  • Joanne Monaghan — former Councillor and Mayor, Kitimat, BC; former President, Union of BC Municipalities; former FCM President

2016

  • Lise Burcher — former Councillor, Guelph, ON; former FCM Director
  • Don Forfar — former Mayor, St. Andrews, MB; former FCM Director

2015

  • Karen Leibovici — former FCM President, former Edmonton Councillor
  • Doug Reycraft — former FCM Board member, former AMO President
  • Basil Stewart — former FCM President, former Mayor of Summerside

2014

  • Colette Roy-Laroche — former Mayor of Lac-Mégantic
  • Graham Letto — former Mayor and former Councillor, Labrador City

2013

  • Yvette Hayden (Gonzalez) — former Northwest Territories Association of Communities CEO
  • Gordon Van Tighem — former FCM Director, former Mayor of Yellowknife, former Northwest Territories Association of Communities President
  • Big Cities Mayors' Caucus — David Miller, former Mayor of Toronto, Dave Bronconnier, former Mayor of Calgary, Senator Larry Campbell, former Mayor of Vancouver, Ann-Marie DeCicco-Best, former Mayor of London, Pat Fiacco, former Mayor of Regina and former FCM Big City Mayors' Caucus Chair

2012

  • Jim Green — former FCM Director, former Vancouver Councillor
  • Gord Steeves — former FCM President, former Winnipeg Councillor
  • Michael Phair — former FCM Director, former Edmonton Councillor
  • Mel Kositsky — former FCM Director, former Langley Councillor
  • Michael Power— former FCM Director, former AMO President, Geraldton
  • James W. Knight — former FCM Chief Executive Officer

Roll of Honour

FCM honours the true difference-makers of local government with our Roll of Honour Awards. These awards pays tribute to FCM officers, and to officials of member municipalities and municipal associations who have made an outstanding contribution to FCM and to municipal government in Canada. You can read more about eligibility criteria here.

Pam McConnell

2018 Recipient — Pam McConnell

Ms. McConnell served on Metro Toronto Council from 1994 to 1998 and on Toronto City Council from 1998 until her passing in 2017. A dedicated advocate for affordable housing and poverty reduction, Ms. McConnell brought tremendous energy and wisdom to her work in Toronto, across Canada, and internationally. Known for her leadership within FCM to promote women's participation in municipal government across Canada and around the world, Ms. McConnell's work paved the way for women leaders in our cities and communities and accelerated efforts to break the glass ceiling.

Some of Ms. McConnell's most significant work at FCM was as a founding member of the Standing Committee on Increasing Women's Participation in Municipal Government. Through this committee, her efforts were instrumental in forming the action plan to encourage and support women seeking municipal office and in the creation of materials and programs being implemented across the country.

Past recipients

2017

  • Hazel McCallion — former Mayor, Mississauga, ON
  • Brad Woodside — former Mayor, Fredericton, NB; former FCM President
  • Russ Powers — former Councillor, Dundas, ON, and Hamilton, ON; former President, Association of Municipalities of Ontario; former FCM Director
  • Debra Button — former Councillor and Mayor, Weyburn, SK; former President, Saskatchewan Urban Municipalities Association; former FCM director
  • Joanne Monaghan — former Councillor and Mayor, Kitimat, BC; former President, Union of BC Municipalities; former FCM President

2016

  • Lise Burcher — former Councillor, Guelph, ON; former FCM Director
  • Don Forfar — former Mayor, St. Andrews, MB; former FCM Director

2015

  • Karen Leibovici — former FCM President, former Edmonton Councillor
  • Doug Reycraft — former FCM Board member, former AMO President
  • Basil Stewart — former FCM President, former Mayor of Summerside

2014

  • Colette Roy-Laroche — former Mayor of Lac-Mégantic
  • Graham Letto — former Mayor and former Councillor, Labrador City

2013

  • Yvette Hayden (Gonzalez) — former Northwest Territories Association of Communities CEO
  • Gordon Van Tighem — former FCM Director, former Mayor of Yellowknife, former Northwest Territories Association of Communities President
  • Big Cities Mayors' Caucus — David Miller, former Mayor of Toronto, Dave Bronconnier, former Mayor of Calgary, Senator Larry Campbell, former Mayor of Vancouver, Ann-Marie DeCicco-Best, former Mayor of London, Pat Fiacco, former Mayor of Regina and former FCM Big City Mayors' Caucus Chair

2012

  • Jim Green — former FCM Director, former Vancouver Councillor
  • Gord Steeves — former FCM President, former Winnipeg Councillor
  • Michael Phair — former FCM Director, former Edmonton Councillor
  • Mel Kositsky — former FCM Director, former Langley Councillor
  • Michael Power— former FCM Director, former AMO President, Geraldton
  • James W. Knight — former FCM Chief Executive Officer

Ann MacLean Award

The Ann MacLean Award for Outstanding Service by a Woman in Municipal Politics recognizes retired women municipal politicians who have shown exemplary service to their community and constituents and to mentoring women who want to run for elected office. It is named in honour of FCM Past President, Ann MacLean, who led FCM´s campaign to increase the number of women in municipal politics across Canada.

The recipient is chosen by the FCM Board of Directors and is presented with the award at our Annual Conference. Take a look at our past recipients.

2018 Recipient—Margaret Tardif, Town of Falher, AB

This year's recipient, Margaret Tardif (second from right), is handed the Award by Darren Hill and Chris Fonseca of FCM's Women Committee, then-President Jenny Gerbasi, and Ann MacLean.
This year's recipient, Margaret Tardif (second from right), is handed the Award by Darren Hill and Chris Fonseca of FCM's Women Committee, then-President Jenny Gerbasi, and Ann MacLean.

This year's Ann MacLean Award winner is former mayor of the Town of Falher, AB, Margaret Tardif. 

Margaret was first elected as a councillor in 1977. Five years later, she was elected as Falher's Mayor and remained in that position for more than 30 years-13 of which she was the only woman on council. While she retired in 2013, Margaret continues to be a well of wisdom for Falher's Council and the mayor.

Even though she was raised by an English-speaking family, Margaret learned French and became a strong advocate for Falher's French community. In 1996, she helped her community become recognized as one of only three officially bilingual communities in Alberta at the time.

Throughout her career, Margaret was a trail blazer and a champion for women in local government. Her strong commitment to mentoring other women and championing civic engagement inspired many. She made it her mission to encourage residents to get involved in their community.

CRTC broadband decision: Big win for rural and northern communities

FCM President Clark Somerville issued the following statement in response to today's decision by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) in the Review of Basic Telecommunications Services.

Broadband is now fundamental to modern life and commerce. The CRTC recognized this today in its Decision adopting a "universal service objective" mandating universal access to reliable broadband — in communities of all sizes — through both fixed and mobile wireless networks.

The CRTC launched its sweeping review of basic telecommunications services in April 2015. FCM's final submission to that process raised the alarm over the "broadband gap" that constrains so many northern and rural communities. Some struggle with bandwidth and network capacity that cannot meet user demands. Others have no broadband coverage at all.

For these communities, today's decision can be transformative. Expanding broadband access will improve local quality of life, help stem youth out-migration and support economic growth — by boosting productivity, supporting innovation and improving market access. The CRTC is responding to FCM's call by adopting a universal speed target of 50 mbps for downloads and 10 mbps for uploads, backed by a new long-term funding mechanism.

This decision comes less than a week after the federal government launched its Connect to Innovate program. First announced in Budget 2016, this five-year $500-million commitment will accelerate broadband upgrades in high-cost rural areas. This plan responds to many of FCM's recommendations and we will keep working with our federal partners to confirm its details.

Even with this new federal support, however, market forces alone will not close the broadband gap for many remote and northern communities. FCM will be examining the CRTC's new funding mechanism to ensure it complements Connect to Innnovate funding to best support the communities that need it most. The next step will be to develop a comprehensive, long-term plan and timeline to make universal broadband access a reality for Canadians. FCM is eager to work with all orders of government to make that happen.

The Federation of Canadian Municipalities is the national voice of municipal government, with 2,000 members representing 90 per cent of the Canadian population.


Information: Michael FitzPatrick, Media Relations: mfitzpatrick@fcm.ca or 613 907 6346

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Cannabis legalization: Municipalities key to keeping Canadians safe and well-served

Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) President Vicki-May Hamm issued the following statement to mark the legalization of non-medical cannabis across Canada today.

“Today marks a significant shift in how our society operates. From public safety to retail services, to transit and labour law, keeping Canadians safe and well-served in a world of legal cannabis will require significant coordination among all orders of government.

“Local governments are on the front lines of cannabis legalization. The Federation of Canadian Municipalities has been helping cities and communities get ready nationwide by providing tools and engaging our various partners. We also know that keeping Canadians safe and well-served will require a clear framework for sharing the costs that come with this new policy.

“Legalization has operational and cost implications for as many as 17 municipal departments. This is why the federal government also released half of its share of cannabis excise tax revenues to provinces and territories—to support municipalities. Yet, only three provinces have revealed plans to share those funds with local governments. Too many of our members across Canada do not have any clarity on how cannabis costs will be covered through provincial revenue sharing frameworks. As the lead on cannabis legalization, the Government of Canada will need to ensure adequate revenue-sharing plans are in place and municipalities are made whole for the costs of this federal policy.

“In September 2017, the federal government also committed $81 million to help our local police services manage a reality of legal cannabis—including through training and technology to tackle drug-impaired driving. Yet as legalization day comes and goes, we are still waiting for details on how this support will flow.

“Local governments have been hard at work changing bylaws, building capacity and engaging citizens to get ready for legalization. Canadians can count on local leaders to be ready to adapt to challenges on the road ahead. One challenge we cannot tackle alone, however, is ensuring local costs are fully and sustainably covered for this new federal initiative.

“Safe and effective cannabis legalization requires collaboration across orders of government and municipalities are ready to do their part. We all need to work together to get this right.”

Vicki-May Hamm is President of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) and Mayor of the City of Magog, Quebec. FCM is the national voice of local government, with nearly 2,000 members representing more than 90 per cent of Canada’s population.

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Diverse Voices: Tools and Practices to Support all Women

Diverse Voices: Tools and Practices to Support all WomenWomen are consistently underrepresented in leadership positions across the political and professional spheres, filling only 26 per cent of the seats in the House of Commons, Provincial and Municipal governments.

Diverse Voices: Tools and Practices to Support all Women explores how municipalities across Canada can work to reduce, and eventually eliminate, the leadership gap. Using examples from select municipalities, it provides resources and tools for local action to support women as leaders and agents of change.

Download the toolkit

Statement from Mayor Don Iveson, Chair of FCM’s Big City Mayors’ Caucus

“To see a Canadian province invoke the Notwithstanding Clause to change the size of a city council, in the middle of an election campaign, is unprecedented. On behalf of FCM’s Big City Mayors’ Caucus, I am offering full support to the City of Toronto’s efforts to protect local democracy.

“Canadians are now stuck in a Constitutional debate, when we have not even tested the limits of how governments can work together within the Constitution. The levers to modernize the relationship already exist.

“Certainly, there is nothing unconstitutional about sitting down together to talk about solving problems, funding cities mandates directly, and creating a forum where municipal governments address our nation’s challenges with their provincial and federal counterparts as equals. It just takes political will from every order of government.

“Mayors are pragmatists. Every day, municipal governments are delivering city-based solutions to national challenges, from economic productivity to public safety. And increasingly, Canadians expect us to share the lead on emerging challenges—from stemming the opioid crisis, to building innovative economies, to settling new Canadians in our communities. 

“It is time for a mature, modern conversation about how we work together to make life better for Canadians. Canada’s mayors are ready.”

The Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) is the national voice of municipal governments, with nearly 2,000 members representing more than 90 per cent of the Canadian population.

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FCM welcomes Canadian poverty reduction strategy

 "Tackling poverty in Canada requires coordination among all levels of government, starting with municipalities. Today's release of a federal poverty reduction strategy is a meaningful response to FCM recommendations, and is a positive step toward tackling the poverty that affects Canadians in every city and town across the country. 

"Every single day, municipal leaders see how poverty prevents people and communities from achieving their full potential. From their place on the front lines, local governments are also making the most of the tools available to respond. They are bringing diverse actors together to tailor federal and provincial initiatives to local realities, and many are leading the way with comprehensive local poverty reduction plans of their own.

"Opportunity for All aligns with FCM's recommendations to boost access to the things people need to thrive - from affordable housing, childcare and transit to robust income supports. Our top priority is an effective roll-out of the National Housing Strategy engaging all orders of government. As well, strengthening data collection and reducing data gaps, if this engages local governments and service providers, will enable municipalities to design, scale up and track local solutions with sharper evidenced-driven policies and programs.

"The experience of living in poverty varies across the country, and so do the right solutions. While Canadians see and feel poverty's effects most at the local level, other orders of government manage investment and policy levers that are vital to lasting solutions. So we especially welcome today's fresh recognition that tackling poverty requires coordinated action across orders of government, grounded in municipal expertise.

"FCM was pleased to participate in this process through our CEO, Brock Carlton, who served on the Ministerial Advisory Committee that informed Opportunity for All. To succeed, any national poverty reduction strategy will need to continue engaging the local order of government every step of the way. FCM and our municipal members look forward to working in partnership to build a Canada where everyone has the opportunity to thrive."

The Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) is the national voice of municipal governments, with nearly 2,000 members representing more than 90 per cent of the Canadian population.

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