CENTRAL NOVA REPORT
The Government of Canada and the Province of Nova Scotia recently reached an agreement on the transfer and administration of federal gas tax funding for Nova Scotia’s municipalities.
As a result of this new 10-year agreement, Nova Scotia will benefit from an estimated $580 million in federal funding. This funding will flow directly to our communities to use on their top infrastructure priorities.
The renewed Gas Tax Fund is the largest part of the new 10-year, $53 billion Building Canada Plan. This plan is the largest commitment the federal government has ever made to support provincial, territorial, and municipal infrastructure. The agreement will provide stable, predictable funding to help Nova Scotia municipalities build and revitalize their public infrastructure, while creating jobs and long-term prosperity, for the benefit of all.
By enshrining these commitments in legislation, provinces like Nova Scotia are assured of an ongoing funding stream to address their municipal infrastructure needs and priorities, to better address the needs of our population.
In recent years across Canada, federal Gas Tax Funds have been invested in drinking water, wastewater, public transit, community energy systems, solid waste management and local roads.
To date, the majority of Gas Tax Funds has gone to supporting public transit projects across the country, as well as local road projects, and water and wastewater projects. Here in Nova Scotia, federal Gas Tax Fund dollars have been invested in a wide variety of key projects and supported more than 800 local infrastructure projects.
The economic success of our province depends greatly on the strength of our communities and this cannot be forgotten – we must give the tools needed to encourage growth and ensure long-term prosperity. To succeed, we must build strong, constructive partnerships. The Gas Tax Fund is an excellent example of such a partnership. The Governments of Canada, Nova Scotia, and municipalities will all play instrumental roles in delivering and maximizing the benefit of federal Gas Tax dollars for Nova Scotia.
By building stronger communities, safer and more prosperous cities; by modernizing and developing our infrastructure; and by supporting measures to help preserve the environment, we are building a better Canada for all today and for future generations to enjoy.
Peter MacKay is MP for Central Nova and federal Justice Minister.