Provincial infrastructure investment below budget
The MHCA applauds the September 29 announced $5 million surplus for the period ended March 31, 2020 but is concerned an ongoing trend of lapsed infrastructure programs against approved budgets.
The announced lapse was $404 million compared to budget – almost 25% – and continues the trend made worse given the pandemic weakened economy.
The report shows the following:
- $61 M less than budget was spent on roads, bridges and flood protection
- $79 M less than budget was spent on buildings, equipment and Technology
- $189 M less than budget was spent on Health, Education and Housing
- $75 M less than budget was spent on Municipal Grants and Crown Corporations
Further industries across Manitoba are frustrated with ongoing inability to sign off on projects eligible for federal funding under the Investing in Canada’s Infrastructure Program (ICIP). As a result, projects with a cumulative value of in excess of $1.5 billion are being held up.
Considering a $1.30 to $1.90 ROI to GDP same year for every dollar so invested, the cumulative negative effect of the above in lost economic growth opportunities, ongoing weak consumer and investor confidence, jobs, and returned tax revenues to governments, is significant.
It is broadly accepted that strategic investment in core infrastructure is the best way to stimulate economic activity. This was acknowledged by government in repeated pledges to flow announced budgets and accelerate investment. We appear to have fallen short of those objectives.
The MHCA wants to work the government to support its stated objectives to accelerate infrastructure investment and will reach out to the Premier for further discussions.
View original article here Source