Canadian Consulting Engineer

Despite disappointment, federal budget holds good news for consulting engineers

February 24, 2003
By Canadian Consulting Engineer

Many in the construction industry were disappointed that Deputy Prime Minister John Manley's federal budget deliver...

Many in the construction industry were disappointed that Deputy Prime Minister John Manley’s federal budget delivered February 18 did not promise more substantial investment in transportation and other hard infrastructure.

However, Manley described several areas of increased spending which could result in new building programs or other investments that will result in work opportunities for consulting engineering firms.

He also announced some tax relief for small businesses — in particular a 50% increase in the small business deduction limit to $300,000 over four years.

Following are some of the budget highlights that consulting engineers might want to track carefully when considering which sectors to focus their business efforts on.

* $3 billion in additional support for infrastructure development over the next 10 years.

* 2 billion over five years to help implement the Government of Canada’s Climate Change Plan for Canada. Funding for initiatives ranging from renewable energy to alternative fuels. Areas such as building retrofits, wind power, fuel cells and ethanol will be considered.

* $1 billion for improving air quality, supporting the clean-up of contaminated sites, protecting species at risk, and creating new national parks and marine conservation areas.

* $600 million over five years to upgrade water and sewer systems on First Nations’ reserves.

Health care
* Federal injection of $34.8 billion over the next five years. This includes $9.5 billion in increased cash transfers to the provinces and territories, and $1.3 billion to support health programming for First Nations.

* Child care. $935 million over five years to help provinces provide greater access to child care and early learning.

* $500 million this year to the Canada Foundation for Innovation to improve buildings and other infrastructure in research hospitals.

* increase of $800 million for Canadian military capabilities plus an immediate allocation of $270 million to address urgent needs.

Border security
* An additional $75 million over the next two years.

* $135 million each year for three years to combat homelessness in Canada’s cities, for a total of $405 million over three years.
* $320 million over five years to the provinces and territories for housing.
* $256 million over two years to extend the Government’s housing renovation program.

see for the budget report.


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