NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED THAT the Alberta Urban Municipalities Association advocate to the federal and provincial government to participate in the development of these important bilateral agreements for the federal infrastructure fund.
WHEREAS in the 2016 federal budget, the Government of Canada announced a new funding program for infrastructure of $120 billion over ten years. In phase one, this will be distributed as follows:
- Public Transit Infrastructure Fund of $3.4 billion to be allocated to municipalities based on ridership
- A plan to invest $5 billion in Green Infrastructure
- Social infrastructure fund of $3.4 billion for important community infrastructure such as housing, recreation and cultural facilities;
WHEREAS municipalities own close to 60% of the infrastructure in communities which creates economic possibility, healthy communities and long term national prosperity;
WHEREAS due to the Canadian constitutional framework, the federal government must work through the provincial government to provide funding to municipalities;
WHEREAS federal municipal funding agreements are subject to federal-provincial bilateral agreements;
WHEREAS these bilateral funding agreements will articulate the criteria, method and timing for the distribution of federal funds to municipalities and these agreements are currently being negotiated;
WHEREAS provincial governments in Alberta have taken a greater role in determining the funding formula or selection criteria for municipal projects to be funded by federal programs;
WHEREAS in past bilateral agreements affecting federal funding of municipal priorities, local community projects, which may have met the federal criteria, may not have been funded because they did not meet the provincial criteria that was added;
WHEREAS funding formulas should be done in a way that ensures that funding flows quickly to communities using a clear mechanism;
WHEREAS municipalities are in the best position to determine funding priorities in their community based on community engagement, strategic plans and capital budgets;
WHEREAS municipalities should be involved with the province and federal government in determining the content of the bilateral agreement so that the agreement matches the outcomes of the federal budget announcement and reflects the municipal context.