The Federation of Canadian Municipalities’ President Bill Karsten issued the following statement regarding the Government of Canada’s announcement today on support for municipalities on the front lines the COVID-19 pandemic.
"Today’s announcement from the Prime Minister recognizes that the municipal financial crisis is a national crisis—and that solving it requires urgent national leadership and meaningful provincial collaboration.
This modest, preliminary measure may help some municipalities with immediate liquidity issues. But to be clear: this is not new money. This money has already been accounted for in municipal budgets and does not address our crisis of non-recoverable losses—or the stark choices cities and communities now face.
The Prime Minister today confirmed his readiness to engage with municipalities on solutions. We are encouraged by his commitment to come forward with additional federal support—and we urge provincial governments to do the same.
Municipalities are on the front lines of this pandemic—and we still face $10-15 billion in non-recoverable losses. That’s why we have appealed for emergency operating funding—to keep frontline services going strong, and to be ready to drive Canada’s recovery.
The fact is: there will be no economic recovery without a solution to the municipal financial crisis. We need all governments working together on this—and that needs to happen now. Without emergency funding, cities and communities are out of time and options."
The Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) is the national voice of local government, with nearly 2,000 members representing more than 90 per cent of Canada’s population.
For more information please contact:
FCM Media Relations, (613) 907-6395, firstname.lastname@example.org