Building stronger communities across Nova Scotia with the federal Gas Tax Fund 

News release

Doubling of the federal Gas Tax Fund delivers a boost in Nova Scotia for 50 communities 

August 20, 2019, Mahone Bay, Nova Scotia — Modern public infrastructure is key to promoting economic growth, strengthening the middle class and developing healthy, sustainable communities. That is why the Government of Canada is reinforcing its commitment to communities through the federal Gas Tax Fund and delivering much needed support for their local priorities. 

Today, the Honourable Bernadette Jordan, Minister of Rural Economic Development and Member of Parliament for South Shore–St. Margarets, was joined by Suzanne Lohnes-Croft, Member of the Legislative Assembly for Lunenburg, and His Worship David Devenne, Mayor of the Town of Mahone Bay, to announce that Nova Scotia has received the first of two $27.9 million annual installments of the federal Gas Tax Fund (GTF), along with a top-up of $58.5 million, made available through Budget 2019. This top-up doubles the amount of money for Nova Scotia communities, based on their allocations for the 2018-19 GTF transfer, enabling them to carry out infrastructure projects that support the well-being of their residents.   

The federal GTF is a long-term, indexed source of funding that supports a diverse range of local infrastructure projects across the province each year. For example, the Municipality of West Hants repurposed an historic wharf, creating a pedestrian boardwalk in Avondale, which has improved tourism in the community.  Meanwhile, the Cape Breton Regional Municipality used GTF to add two new buses to its fleet, enhancing its public transit services and allowing increased local ridership. And in the Town of Mahone Bay, residents can look forward to smoother and safer travels along Clearland Road with rehabilitation planned for this year. The Town is also using GTF funding to gather data on local GHG emissions to plan for future energy systems that are greener and more sustainable over the long-term.

This year, the Town of Mahone Bay will receive a total of $80,478 for their annual allocation, and an additional $83,897 through the top-up.

This predictable funding, enhanced by a doubling of the 2018-19 GTF allocations, as announced in Budget 2019, is allowing communities to plan for current and future infrastructure priorities, so they can build the resilient infrastructure of the 21st century that residents deserve, and help ensure that Nova Scotia remains among the best places in the world to live.

Quotes

“The Government of Canada is proud to deliver this stable, predictable long-term funding that communities rely on to develop their public infrastructure. High quality infrastructure is vital to the prosperity of Canada’s rural communities and helps create good middle class jobs for newcomers, and places where residents want to stay over the long term. From improving roads, water services and energy efficiency, to enhancing recreation and tourism centres, the federal Gas Tax Fund is helping keep families safe, promote economic development and improve people’s quality of life across the country.”

The Honourable Bernadette Jordan, Minister of Rural Economic Development and MP for South Shore–St. Margarets

“Modern, reliable infrastructure is the foundation for healthy and vibrant communities. I am pleased that through the federal Gas Tax Fund, Nova Scotia communities can invest in public infrastructure, addressing local priorities, and contribute to economic growth and job creation across Nova Scotia.”

Suzanne Lohnes-Croft, MLA for Lunenburg, on behalf of the Honourable Chuck Porter, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing

“Gas Tax Funding is a dependable and predictable source of funding that is invaluable to a town like Mahone Bay to undertake repairs and improvements to infrastructure. The doubling of the gas tax this fiscal year is tangible evidence of federal government support for local municipalities. As a small town with infrastructure needing replacement, programs such as the Gas Tax Fund are critical. The increased funding that the Town of Mahone Bay receives from the Gas Tax Fund this year will provide for an expanded road renewal program. In an effort to continue the planned renewal of infrastructure, the Town of Mahone Bay echoes the joint national initiative of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities to extend the doubling of the Gas Tax into future fiscal years.”

His Worship David Devenne, Mayor of the Town of Mahone Bay

Quick facts

  • The federal Gas Tax Fund delivers over $2 billion every year to over 3,600 communities across the country. In recent years the funding has supported approximately 4,000 projects each year.

  • To help address the short-term infrastructure priorities of municipalities, local governments and Indigenous communities, Budget 2019 includes a top-up of $2.2 billion to the federal Gas Tax Fund. 

  • The federal Gas Tax Fund is flexible in allowing communities to apply funding to their most pressing local needs. Communities can invest across 18 different project categories, including recreation, water systems and roads. They can also use the funds immediately for priority projects, bank them for later use, pool the dollars with other communities for shared infrastructure projects, or use them to finance major infrastructure expenditures.

  • Through its Investing in Canada plan, the Government of Canada is investing more than $180 billion over 12 years in public transit projects, green infrastructure, social infrastructure, trade and transportation routes, and Canada’s rural and northern communities.

  • The plan includes more than $92 billion for funding such as the Gas Tax Fund and more than $95 billion in new funding for infrastructure programs. 

  • The plan includes more than $92 billion for funding such as the Gas Tax Fund and more than $95 billion in new funding for infrastructure programs. 

  • On June 27, 2019, the Government of Canada launched two new strategies: Canada’s Connectivity Strategy, which commits to connect all Canadians to high-speed internet, and Canada’s first Rural Economic Development Strategy, which will spur economic growth and create good, middle class jobs for rural Canadians across the country.

  • The Rural Economic Development Strategy leverages ongoing federal investments and provides a vision for the future, identifying practical steps to take in the short term, and serving as a foundation to guide further work.

  • Central to Canada’s Connectivity Strategy are historic new investments that are mobilizing up to $6 billion toward universal connectivity. They include a top-up to the Connect to Innovate Program, a new Universal Broadband Fund, and investments from the Canada Infrastructure Bank.

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Associated links

Contacts

Émilie Simard
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Rural Economic Development
613-864-7690
emilie.simard3@canada.ca

Blaise Theriault
Communications Officer
Communications Nova Scotia
902-476-5092
blaise.theriault@novascotia.ca

Infrastructure Canada
613-960-9251
Toll free: 1-877-250-7154
infc.media-medias.infc@canada.ca
Twitter: @INFC_eng
Web: Infrastructure Canada


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