FCM welcomes NDP leader Jack Layton to its annual conference



    WHISTLER, BC, June 5 /CNW Telbec/ - The following statement was released
today by Federation of Canadian Municipalities' (FCM) President Jean Perrault,
following the speech to FCM delegates by Jack Layton, Leader of the New
Democratic Party of Canada:
    "FCM delegates today welcomed NDP leader Jack Layton to their annual
conference and appreciated his expressions of support for municipal
government.
    Mr. Layton has long been a strong supporter of municipal issues and has
strong roots at FCM going back to his days as a Toronto city councillor and
later FCM president.
    We particularly appreciated Mr. Layton's endorsement today of FCM's
advocacy on behalf of rural communities, as well as the support of NDP rural
development critic Niki Ashton in the House of Commons.
    Calling our report on rural Canada 'compelling,' Mr. Layton said he
wanted to emphasize his party's support for its recommendations, including a
federal cabinet-level rural champion; a long-term strategy for rural
communities; tailored, responsive solutions to rural issues; commitment of
resources within government to ensure policies are suitable for rural
communities; and emphasis on partnership and breaking down government silos to
ensure coordination of rural issues.
    Mr. Layton also echoed the call made by FCM's Big City Mayors' Caucus
this week to flow stimulus dollars to shovel-ready projects as quickly as
possible. The infrastructure projects announced in Ontario today demonstrate
the action the country needs, and municipalities are looking forward to
projects getting underway in cities and communities across the country.
    We agree with Mr. Layton that municipalities are the foundation of
Canada's strength and vitality, and that Canada needs to support its
municipalities, both rural and urban. FCM looks forward to working with him
and with all Members of Parliament to build strong, healthy and sustainable
communities."




For further information:

For further information: Jocelyn Sweet, (613) 907-6395, jsweet@fcm.ca

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Federation of Canadian Municipalities

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