Federation of Canadian Municipalities President Vicki-May Hamm issued the following statement after today’s release of the Government of Canada’s 2019 federal budget.
“Today’s budget delivers major results for Canadians directly through their local governments. We welcome this as a significant turning point for cities and communities across Canada.
“Municipalities are the order of government closest to Canadians’ daily realities. From our unique position, we know what’s needed on the ground and we deliver cost-effective solutions that work. That’s why local governments are vital partners in achieving a wide range of federal objectives.
“Today’s budget elevates this federal-municipal partnership as the way to build better lives for Canadians. It puts community-building tools directly in local hands by growing next year’s core federal funding transfer to municipalities. It implements our urgent recommendations to close Canada’s rural Internet gap. And by investing in FCM’s programs, it builds on a federal-municipal collaboration that has been directly enriching the lives of Canadians for decades.
“The Gas Tax Fund is the long-term, predictable federal funding stream that local governments rely on to deliver thousands of infrastructure projects each year. For communities of all sizes, growing this transfer means better roads, bridges, transit, recreation centres and more. This is about empowering local governments to do what they do best: deliver cost-effective solutions that build better lives for Canadians.
“The national broadband strategy announced today is a major boost for Canada’s rural, remote and northern communities. In 2019, high-speed Internet is an essential service—for businesses looking to compete and for our everyday quality of life. Today’s announcement is a strong response to FCM’s call to prioritize universal Internet access for two million Canadians who still can’t access a reliable connection.
“This budget also builds on a proven federal-municipal collaboration that delivers directly for Canadians in their communities. Since 2000, FCM’s Green Municipal Fund has directly financed more than 1,250 local sustainability initiatives while preserving every dollar of federal capital. These projects have cut 2.5 million tonnes of greenhouse gasses—the equivalent of taking 571,000 cars off the road—while creating good jobs and more livable communities. For families across Canada, delivering more investment through FCM will mean everything from more energy-efficient homes to sustainable new recreation centres.
“Today’s federal budget doubles down on working directly with local governments to make life for Canadians more secure and affordable. It’s a turning point that sets us on a path toward a more fully modernized federal-provincial relationship—one that empowers Canadians’ local leaders to get even more done for the people we serve.“
The Federation of Canadian Municipalities is the national voice of local government, with nearly 2,000 member municipalities representing more than 90 per cent of the Canadian population.
For more information, please contact:
FCM Media Relations, (613) 907-6395, firstname.lastname@example.org