July 15, 2020

OTTAWA – As federal, provincial and territorial governments continue negotiating agreements for the $14 billion “safe economic restart” plan, the Federation of Canadian Municipalities’ (FCM) Big City Mayors’ Caucus met today to discuss the urgent and ongoing financial crisis municipalities face. The caucus is calling on the federal government to guarantee adequate and dedicated emergency funding for municipalities and for strong provincial collaboration.   

"All governments need to work together now to tackle this urgent municipal financial crisis. We need a nationwide solution so we can continue protecting frontline services and Canada’s recovery—and that requires steadfast national leadership and provincial cooperation,” said FCM President Bill Karsten. “Cities and communities across the country have been clear: the time for action is now.” 

As the country’s frontline governments, municipalities are key to Canada’s recovery. They deliver stimulus efficiently, in ways that create jobs and tackle pressing challenges—from housing affordability to climate change. Yet municipalities of all sizes face rising costs, plummeting revenues, and no ability to run deficits. They are losing $400 million monthly in transit fares alone. Without sufficient emergency funding now, municipal leaders face stark choices: more service cuts or massive tax levies.

"Strong federal leadership is key during these negotiations. To tackle this national economic crisis, these agreements need to ensure that funding for municipalities is sufficient, clearly identified, targeted to frontline operations—and that it reaches those front lines fast.,” said Don Iveson, FCM’s Big City Mayors’ Caucus Chair and mayor of Edmonton. “There’ll be no recovery without tackling the municipal financial crisis, and time is up."

FCM called in April for emergency operating funding to continue supporting Canadians through the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more at FCM.ca.

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

For more information please contact:

FCM Media Relations, (613) 907-6395, media@fcm.ca

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