The Manitoba government has announced it will be distributing an additional $10 million in unconditional operating funding to rural municipalities as part of its Budget 2019 to support their critical infrastructure needs, such as fixing roads and bridges. In a separate announcement, the province increased the Manitoba Water Services Board capital budget by $2 million for 2019-20, to a total of $15.8 million, allowing municipalities to initiate more capital projects and undertake engineering studies and designs, ensuring there are enough tender-ready projects to maximize federal and provincial funding.
The enhanced infrastructure support for municipalities is unconditional and complementary to federal funding. It will allow municipalities to use the funds as their contribution to access provincial and federal funding through the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program or apply them towards projects funded under the federal Gas Tax Fund.
The increased water budget is part of a new plan that includes a total provincial commitment of $75.5 million over five years for water and sewer infrastructure in rural Manitoba.
Some of the projects include new water supply wells and distribution pumping upgrades in Virden, the second phase of water plant process enhancements in Portage La Prairie, water supply upgrades in Swan River and investments in Sinclair regional wastewater system in the rural municipality of Pipestone.