MP Report by Jay Hill, M.P.
“Special Delivery:  Federal Funding Gives Local Projects A Head Start”

To successfully jump-start Canada’s economy amidst this global recession, the federal government’s economic stimulus funding must get to the people, organizations and communities that need it NOW!  This is especially important in Prince George-Peace River where we have a limited construction season.

In addition to new funding programs, the Government of Canada has partnered with the Province of British Columbia wherever possible to expand and accelerate the delivery of funds, especially to local municipalities.  Canada and BC are now jointly injecting capital into our region through Towns 4 Tomorrow, LocalMotion and Building Canada’s Communities Component, among other programs and agreements.

Throughout the past week, I was pleased to announce federal funding from, literally, “one end of the riding to the other”.

The Government of Canada has awarded a $22.38-million contract to North Country Maintenance to maintain and repair the Alaska Highway from Summit Lake, north of Fort Nelson, to the Yukon border.

In Pouce Coupe, local MLA and BC Energy Minister Blair Lekstrom and I announced a joint federal-provincial grant of $174,166 for the village’s project to reinforce a section of its sewage treatment lagoon. 

Later in Dawson Creek, I announced a $375,906 Human Resources & Skills Development grant to the Youth Outlook 360 and Resource Centre Society.  Forty at-risk youth in Dawson Creek will obtain career information, develop skills, gain work experience that will help them find good jobs and stay employed.

Minister Lekstrom and I were then in Taylor to deliver another Canada-BC contribution of $2.37-million to help rehabilitate a number of local roads in the district with asphalt surface and sidewalks.

I then joined Deputy Premier Shirley Bond and Forests Minister Pat Bell to announce that the City of Prince George will receive $113,788 from the LocalMotion program to continue to install audible signals at crosswalks to assist those who are visually-impaired.

And a partnership between the City of Prince George, the Province of British Columbia and the Government of Canada has made BizPal available in the city. BizPal is a new online business permit and licence service that reduces red tape and paperwork for small businesses and entrepreneurs.

I wrapped up the week in McBride with Minister Bond to announce a joint contribution of $1.55-million for phase one of McBride’s project to improve wastewater treatment, an eco-sensitive solution to the village’s wastewater management.

McBride is also working to improve its water management through a water metering and conservation project that will reduce water usage by 111,000 cubic meters per year.  A $300,000 federal-provincial contribution will help with that endeavour.

Throughout the coming weeks, several more “shovel-ready” projects and well-developed programs will receive federal and provincial approval and funding as our Conservative Government remains focused on stimulating Canada’s economy. 

For Prince George-Peace River, this means more jobs, an immediate boost in business activity and necessary investment in workforce training, roads, bridges, sewers, water systems, community facilities and more.  In other words improvements in the services and basic structures that make a difference in our everyday lives – at a time when we need them most.