Throne speech gives boost to municipal infrastructure and environmental clean-ups
February 3, 2004
By Canadian Consulting Engineer
Signs are that municipalities will have more money to spend on infrastructure, following the Speech from the Throne...
Signs are that municipalities will have more money to spend on infrastructure, following the Speech from the Throne delivered on Monday in Ottawa.
Governor General Adrienne Clarkson outlined the federal government’s direction for the new parliamentary session, and it contained a number of aspects that promise work for consulting engineers. Prime Minister Paul Martin elaborated on the speech the following day and confirmed that for one thing, the government will be in effect giving $520 million to cities by relieving them of having to pay the Goods and Services Tax (GST). The government also intends to work with the provincial governments to give a portion of the gas tax to municipalities. City mayors and others have been lobbying heavily for the tax rebate in order to use it to build and repair roads and neglected public transit.
Environmental remediation is another area that has been pinpointed for spending. The Throne Speech indicated that the government will allocate $500 million over the next 10 years to clean up Nova Scotia’s Sydney tar ponds — a project that has dragged on for years — and $3.5 billion to clean up other sites.