Federal Issues--March-April 2016

Details on Infrastructure Funding

Minister Amarjeet Sohi published his letter to Minister Maclellan regarding Infrastructure Canada's new programs related to public transit, water and wastewater infrastructure. The federal government will be focussing on projects that promote innovation, optimization and rehabilitation of existing assets and will consider projects eligible as of April 1, 2016. There is a clear intent to get projects starting now, to being completed in a shorter period of time. However the process for project approval still has to be announced. We will continue to update you as we learn more from the province on how the programs will be rolled out. Nova Scotia will receive $32.2 million for public transit, and $86.8 million from the Clean Water Wastewater Fund. Under these programs, the federal government will contribute 50% of eligible costs.

Derelict Vessels

Municipalities are asked to support MP Bernadette Jordan's private members motion on abandoned and derelict vessels. The motion calls on the federal government to take action on the issue of derelict and abandoned vessels. The motion, M-40, proposes the government explore legislative options prohibiting the abandonment of a vessel, suggests an educational component on responsible vessel ownership, recommends improving vessel registration and ownership identification, and calls on the government to assist in the removal of abandoned vessels in cases where their presence creates an economic burden on a community. The motion is expected to debated and voted on in early June of this year.