OSWCA Commends Wynne Government on Strong Infrastructure Commitments, but Concerned over Significant Cost Increases to Construction Employers

Wynne Government Recognizes the Importance of Cutting the Infrastructure Deficit, but does so by Increasing Taxes on Construction Employers

TORONTO, May 2, 2014 /CNW/ - The Ontario Sewer and Watermain Construction Association (OSWCA) is encouraged that infrastructure investment remains a top priority for Ontario as the Wynne Government's 2014 Budget continues to address the provincial infrastructure deficit, with a particular focus on transportation infrastructure development. This is an important strategy to push forward with, as Ontario continues to struggle with a significant infrastructure deficit and traffic congestion, which negatively impact economic activity in the provinces major urban centres. Nevertheless, OSWCA has particular concerns with the decision to repeal the Fuel Tax exemption for road-building equipment and with a number of other tax increases that will restrain private sector growth in the construction industry.

"It is clear the government is focused on shrinking the infrastructure deficit and improving the significant traffic congestion problems that we face in the province," stated Cindy McCarthy, President of the OSWCA, "but repealing the Fuel Tax Exemption for road-building equipment as a way to pay for it is not practical or acceptable."

OSWCA Executive Director Giovanni Cautillo noted that "the provincial Fuel Tax is meant to act as a user fee for vehicles on the road, not for construction equipment operating on a closed worksite. The repeal of this tax exemption has the potential to cost our members millions of dollars a year in lost revenue."

The chart below represents a quick analysis of common equipment used in the heavy civil construction industry and the potential cost implications per piece of equipment per day.

Equipment Approximate Fuel
Consumption Per Days
work
Operating Cost Increase Per Day
(Diesel Consumption x 14.3 cents per
litre)
Volvo 460 Excavator 500 litres $71.50
Caterpillar D6 Dozer 350 litres $50.05
John Deere 700 series 150 litres $21.45

The OSWCA is the voice of the sewer and watermain industry in the province, representing over 700 member companies, including contractors, suppliers, manufacturers, and consulting engineers. To learn more about the OSWCA go to www.oswca.org.

SOURCE Ontario Sewer and Watermain Construction Association

For further information:


Giovanni Cautillo, Executive Director, OSWCA
giovanni.cautillo@oswca.org or 905-629-8658