News Release: Canada, BC & UBCM Sign Renewed Gas Tax Agreement

FEDERAL FUNDING NOW AVAILABLE FOR BRITISH COLUMBIA COMMUNITIES

Canada's Gas Tax Fund supports local infrastructure priorities throughout British Columbia

May 22, 2014 Vancouver, British Columbia

The Honourable James Moore, Minister of Industry and Minister Responsible for British Columbia, the Honourable Coralee Oakes, Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development for British Columbia, and Rhona Martin, President of the Union of British Columbia Municipalities, celebrated today an agreement for the renewed federal Gas Tax Fund that provides predictable, stable funding for public infrastructure across British Columbia.

The federal Gas Tax Fund provides local governments with the flexibility to choose and plan infrastructure projects based on their specific priorities. The renewed agreements will govern the flow of federal funds to each province and territory over the next 10 years, from 2014-15 until 2023-24.

Since 2006, significant improvements have been made to the Gas Tax Fund; it has been extended, doubled, indexed and made permanent. By enshrining these commitments in legislation, provinces, territories and local governments are assured of an ongoing funding stream to address community infrastructure needs and priorities.

Under the renewed Gas Tax Fund, eligible categories have also been expanded, providing local governments with more flexibility than ever before to support local infrastructure.

With this agreement the Government of Canada is ensuring a seamless transition to the New Building Canada Plan, the largest long-term federal commitment to investing in Canada's public infrastructure in our nation's history.


Quick Facts

· Canada's Gas Tax Fund transfer has provided $13 billion to Canadian communities to date. Over the 10-year life of the New Building Canada Plan from 2014 to 2024, the Gas Tax Fund will provide close to $22 billion in funding for local governments.

· In total, the New Building Canada Plan will provide $53 billion in funding to communities across the country over the next decade. For British Columbia, this represents almost $3.9 billion in dedicated federal funding, including almost $1.1 billion under the New Building Canada Fund and an estimated $2.76 billion under the federal Gas Tax Fund*. British Columbia also stands to benefit from the Government of Canada's following national funding programs:

    • $4 billion available across the country for projects of national significance,
    • $1.25 billion in additional funding available for public-private partnerships (P3) projects,
    • $10.4 billion via the GST Rebate, which provides local governments across the country with additional resources to address their infrastructure priorities.

· Between 2006 and 2012, British Columbia's local governments benefitted from funding from the Gas Tax Fund Agreement to support nearly 2000 local infrastructure projects. For example, during the last construction season, the federal Gas Tax Fund supported:

    • $28.5 million to refurbish 114 SkyTrain TransLink vehicles in Vancouver;
    • $1.68 million for an expanded, renovated recycling Centre in Ladysmith, Cowichan Valley Regional District;
    • $1.2 million for green energy projects in Fort St. John; and
    • $600,000 for roundabout construction on Summerland's main traffic corridor.

· Eligible investment categories under this Fund include: drinking water; wastewater; solid waste; public transit; community energy systems; local roads and bridges; capacity building; disaster mitigation; broadband connectivity; highways; short-line rail; short-sea shipping; brownfield redevelopment; regional and local airports; and projects supporting culture, tourism, sport and recreation.

· A funding table is now available for all local governments in British Columbia receiving allocated funds: http://ow.ly/x9xF3

· The Union of British Columbia Municipalities (UBCM) administers the Gas Tax Fund in BC, in collaboration with Canada and British Columbia.

Quotes

“Our Government's commitment to communities has never been stronger. Through our unprecedented financial support for public infrastructure, we are ensuring communities across the country enjoy a high standard of living, new economic opportunities, and a safe, healthy environment.

We are proud to support economic growth across British Columbia by supporting your infrastructure priorities through the federal Gas Tax Fund. We are very pleased to have reached an agreement with British Columbia and the Union of British Columbia Municipalities, which will make this important funding available and allow communities to address their specific infrastructure priorities.”

The Honourable James Moore,

Minister of Industry and Minister Responsible for British Columbia

on behalf of the Honourable Denis Lebel, Minister of Infrastructure, Communities, and Intergovernmental Affairs and Minister of the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec

“Renewing the Gas Tax Agreement sustains support for key local infrastructure projects in British Columbia over the next ten years. Achieved by a partnership between the Government of British Columbia, the Union of British Columbia Municipalities and the Government of Canada, the agreement provides significant funding to help B.C. communities continue to prosper as great places to live, work, invest, play and visit.”

The Honourable Coralee Oakes

Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development

“Community infrastructure is a cornerstone for the quality of life in British Columbia. By transferring $2.76 billion to local governments over the next decade, the federal Gas Tax Fund is making a significant contribution to the core infrastructure in our communities. The Gas Tax Fund has already supported more than 2000 local projects in BC. This new agreement will help build thousands more.”

Rhona Martin

UBCM President

Associated Links

Learn more about the federal Gas Tax Fund: www.infrastructure.gc.ca/plan/gtf-fte-eng.html.

Read the new Canada–British Columbia federal Gas Tax Fund agreement: www.infrastructure.gc.ca/prog/agreements-ententes/gtf-fte/2014-bc-eng.html

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Contacts

Vincent Rabault
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Infrastructure, Communities and Intergovernmental Affairs and
Minister of the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec
613-943-1838

Gillian Rhodes
Communications Manager
Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development
250-356-6334

Paul Taylor
Director of Communications
UBCM
250-356-2938

Infrastructure Canada
613-960-9251
Toll free: 1-877-250-7154
media@infc.gc.ca

Follow us on Twitter at @INFC_eng

*NOTE: GTF funding by jurisdiction for the first five years (2014-2019) is based on 2011 Census data. GTF funding for 2019-2024 will be based on 2016 Census data. For illustrative purposes, Census 2011 data has been used for all 10 years. Due to the indexation of the GTF, funding for 2019-2024 is expected to be at least equal to GTF funding for the first five years.

View the News Release for Federal Funding Now Available For British Columbia Communities

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