Now that the financial promises are made, municipalities have to make sure the money for infrastructure projects shows up, said a local representative of a national municipal government group.
Coun. Garth Frizzell attended the Federation of Canadian Municipalities' (FCM) board of directors meeting in St. John's, N.L., last week.
"We're really excited the way [infrastructure funding] came out in the budget this year, of course, because we were one of the only areas where the government really put in a big investment. But now is the time to make sure it rolls out the way we hope," Frizzell said.
In the 2013 budget, the federal government renewed and extended the Building Canada Fund as well as indexed the permanent Gas Tax Fund. FCM board members agreed that governments must act quickly to set priorities and sign funding agreements for the new 10-year, $14 billion Building Canada Fund.
"Prince George needs a fair and predictable share of new federal funding in order to address our growing infrastructure challenges," said Frizzell.
The FCM board used the session to prepare policy and a plan of attack for meetings with federal officials on Parliament Hill at the end of November.
"Government isn't just one person. So we go out and meet each of the MPs from all the different parties - as many of them as we can - and we talk about direct impact in their riding," said Frizzell. "It's a reminder to them of how valuable the programs are and how much the constituents depend on the infrastructure that gets funded by those programs."
The FCM board, which represents more than 2,000 member communities across the country, also placed emphasis on a need to strengthen Canada's housing system as well as endorsed national recommendations for improving rail safety.