TORONTO, March 21, 2013 /CNW/ - The Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO) today welcomed the 2013 Federal Budget's focus on investing in infrastructure to help build our local, provincial and national economies.
"As owners of more infrastructure than any other level of government, Ontario municipalities need long-term, sustainable funding to invest in local priority projects," said AMO President Russ Powers. "I'm anxious to work with the federal government to move these commitments forward and to get shovels in the ground."
The federal government committed to improving Canada's Gas Tax Fund by adding new project categories for municipalities to invest in. AMO has advocated for a more flexible Fund that will allow each municipality to invest exactly where it is needed the most. This improvement recognizes that all types of municipal infrastructure can contribute to public safety, better quality of life and economic growth.
Starting in 2014-15, Canada's Gas Tax Fund will be indexed at two per cent per year. An indexed Fund is essential so that infrastructure funding grows over time to meet inflation and the rising costs of construction.
The government also announced a 10-year Building Canada Fund to replace the expiring Building Canada Plan. The $10 billion Fund will support provincial, territorial and municipal infrastructure. The 10-year Fund is a direct result of discussions between the federal government and its stakeholders, including AMO and the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM).
The federal government will renew two housing program agreements that provide municipalities with critical funding for affordable housing and homeless programs to vulnerable populations in their communities.
AMO is a non-profit organization representing almost all of Ontario's 444 municipal governments. AMO supports and enhances strong and effective municipal government in Ontario and promotes the value of municipal government as a vital and essential component of Ontario and Canada's political system.
SOURCE: Association of Municipalities of Ontario
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