Media Releases

 

 

Metro Vancouver today urged the federal government to develop a new national infrastructure program that lasts at least 10 years. "The Government of Canada's next national infrastructure program must provide certainty and predictability to cities and communities over a much longer period to ensure quality of life for our communities." said Board Chair Greg Moore. "As noted by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities, the new long-term plan must respond not only to current infrastructure needs but also to long-range and emerging pressures such as mitigating and adapting to climate change, growth pressures, responding to new federal government regulations and fiscal challenges." Moore pointed out that proposed federal wastewater treatment regulations – new requirements endorsed by federal and provincial environment ministers – will compel Metro Vancouver to spend at least $1.4 billion to build more innovative secondary wastewater treatment plants to replace the existing Lions Gate and Iona Island primary treatment plants. "Funding support from the provincial and federal governments is essential to complete those two massive construction projects before the deadlines that the federal regulations will impose," Moore said. "The $1.4 billion cost of those wastewater treatment upgrades have to be shared with other governments, so local taxpayers don't have to foot the whole bill." In November 2011, federal Transport Minister Denis Lebel announced the government's commitment to develop a new, long-term infrastructure program that would replace the Building Canada Plan, which will expire in 2014. This June at its annual conference in Saskatoon, the Federation of Canadian Municipalities launched Target 2014, a national campaign that urges the federal Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure to "ensure the new long-term infrastructure plan meets the core infrastructure needs of cities and communities" across Canada. At the FCM conference, Lebel announced a series of 11 regional roundtables would be held across the country in June and July to gather first-hand municipal input into a long-term infrastructure plan, in preparation for a national infrastructure roundtable in the fall. A regional roundtable took place today at a Vancouver hotel. Metro Vancouver's Board Chair and Vice-Chair Raymond Louie, representing Metro Vancouver's 24 local authorities, joined Steven Fletcher, the federal Minister of State for Transport. Other participants represented a cross-section of municipalities, businesses and other sectors.