Mr. Speaker, on February 1, 2005, the Government of Canada announced how it plans to share a portion of federal gas tax revenues with municipalities to make investments in sustainable infrastructure. Beginning in 2005-06, the funding will ramp up over five years, for a total of $5 billion. By 2009-2010 the funding flowing to municipalities will amount to $2 billion, the equivalent of 5 cents-per-litre of the federal gas tax. This represents a strategic investment in Canada’s cities and communities.
Funding will be allocated to the provinces, territories, and First Nations, on a per capita basis, with $37.5 million, equivalent to 0.75% of total funding, assured for each of Nunavut, Northwest Territories, Yukon and Prince Edward Island. This recognizes the need for less-populated jurisdictions to have sufficient funds for significant infrastructure investments, and the increased costs associated with infrastructure in northern and remote areas.
The Minister of State (Infrastructure and Communities) is presently negotiating bilateral agreements with the provinces and territories, which will further outline details of how the federal gas tax funds will be spent within each jurisdiction, including the allocation to municipalities.
The 5-year funding profile for the sharing of the gas tax revenues was announced in the budget presented to the House of Commons on February 23, 2005.