MRC PONTIAC & MUNICIPALITY OF PONTIAC – As part of the 2019 federal budget, delivered March 19, the Government of Canada will provide an additional $2.2 billion directly to Canadian municipalities through the Federal Gas Tax Fund. The breakdown of distribution was announced April 1 and the whole Pontiac federal riding is slated to receive a $16.3 million share of the pie that will surely
benefit the upcoming construction season.
“Municipalities are in the best position to decide where and how to invest in infrastructure for the benefit of people in their communities. With these unanticipated funds, local elected officials will have more flexibility to achieve their community infrastructure objectives,” said Pontiac MP Will Amos, noting the amounts allocated to the MRC Pontiac and Municipality of Pontiac have been doubled to $1,657,288 and $249,031 respectively.
The Federal Gas Tax Fund is a permanent source of funding to support municipalities in their local infrastructure priorities. It can be used to fund transit projects, repair local roads and bridges, upgrade wastewater treatment systems, improve waste management, for natural disaster mitigation projects, or cultural, tourism, sporting and recreational infrastructure. The funding, although federal, is distributed through the provincial government and is determined according to the population of each municipality.
With the news just announced, municipalities will determine how to use the funds at future council meetings. “We are waiting until our next meeting to discuss it, but we have so much road, water and community centre work, we won’t have trouble finding places to use the funds. We have so many priorities and any additional funds are appreciated,” said Charlotte Laforest, Municipality of Pontiac director general.