MHCA meeting with MI minister, seeks details on election promises

MHCA meeting with MI minister, seeks details on election promises

The MHCA will ask Infrastructure Minister Ron Schuler for details on the government’s plans to develop at 10-year strategic infrastructure investment plan, and to release the investment deficit for the province’s roads and bridges.

“There are a number of items that we are anxious to talk to the minister about, including the proposal we have made to the province to have a working group appointed to review the way we are currently investing in core infrastructure,” MHCA President Chris Lorenc said.

“The industry would like to see the investment in core infrastructure, across government, reframed so that it highlights those projects and required assets that would give the greatest return on the dollar.”

The Progressive Conservatives have promised to increase the highways capital budget to $400 million from the current $350 million. The minister’s mandate letter also directed him to:

  • work with the Manitoba Heavy Construction Association and other private sector agencies to develop a plan to allow the private sector to assume a more meaningful role in service delivery with the outcome of lowering “soft costs”
  • develop a dedicated fund for infrastructure projects that stimulates private sector investment and job creation for inclusion in Budget 2020

“We have a pretty good idea of the investment deficit that the province is facing, to bring its bridges and roads into good shape. We also know an additional $200-300 million is needed annually to improve the system for safety, trade and to meet the needs of a growing population,” Lorenc said.

“Manitobans need to know this information, so we can begin to discuss a long-term, multi-budget strategy to deliver the transportation infrastructure that adequately serves residents and their economy.”

MHCA is to meet with Schuler on October 15.

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