Issue Statement: February 2, 2014
Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced high-level details on the New Building Canada Plan, including:
- $1 billion in funding for small communities;
- Details on the provincial-territorial allocations;
- Project categories eligible for support;
- Cost-sharing thresholds; and
- Public-private partnership (P3) screening requirements.
Engineers Canada has been an active participant in multi-stakeholder consultations with the federal government during the development of the new plan. We called for funds to be allocated for the risk assessment of public infrastructure in the face of increasingly extreme weather, and believe that infrastructure owners must ensure their funding is sufficient for long-term asset management.
- Engineers Canada’s 2014 Pre-budget Submission called on the federal government to allocate $4M of the New Building Canada Fund to promote the use of engineering vulnerability assessments by infrastructure owners to ensure that new and existing projects can withstand extreme weather.
- Economic Action Plan 2014 included $200 million over five years to create the National Disaster Mitigation Program to support investment in structural mitigation measures that will reduce the impact of severe natural disasters.
- Disaster mitigation, transit and wastewater projects are eligible for funding under all three components of the New Building Canada Plan. Each province, territory or municipality can prioritize which projects are most important in their region.
- Engineers Canada will continue to work with the federal government and infrastructure stakeholders on the terms and parameters of the New Building Canada Fund.
- Engineers Canada will endeavour to gather additional information from Infrastructure Canada and Public Safety Canada on the disaster mitigation program announced in Economic Action Plan 2014.