Municipalities across the country will find out when the federal finance minister tables his next budget exactly what they face for infrastructure funding.
Coun. Nancy Bepple said in a telephone interview from Prince George on Friday that the Federation of Canadian Municipalities has done all it can to lobby for infrastructure programs to continue past the 2014 expiry date of the current program.
Bepple sits on the board of the FCM.
“Our job is done at this point. It’s in the hands of the federal government. We lobbied. We came forward with a specific request. We had backup from a host of different partners across the country. We’ve done our job. It’s up to the federal government now that will or will not incorporate our ask,” she said.
The federal budget is due in two or three weeks.
Bepple said the FCM has been lobbying Ottawa for the past three years to get a national infrastructure funding program continued beyond 2014.
“We’ll know in the next three weeks what we have,” she said.
“It’ll give us (Kamloops City council) certainty when we do our budget planning. In our five-year capital plan, we couldn’t count on any federal money until a new deal was done.”
The infrastructure decision will then guide council’s budget process, which is moving toward completion.
Bepple said she has also picked up information on wildfire mitigation, economic development with First Nations and planning for an aging municipal population while at this conference. The FCM has four meetings a year.