Provinces call on Ottawa for more infrastructure cash

first_img Related news Finance ministers from across Canada issued a collective plea Monday for the Harper government to dig deeper into its pockets to help build bridges, repair roads and improve public transit across the federation. Provincial and territorial finance ministers pressed federal counterpart Joe Oliver to consider investing more cash in infrastructure projects as a way to help further stimulate the economy. Toronto stock market dips on weakness in the energy and financials sectors Provinces to feel the pandemic pinch in 2021: Moody’s Andy Blatchford Provincial bonds get record attention from foreign investors: StatsCancenter_img Keywords Provinces,  Marketwatch Facebook LinkedIn Twitter Share this article and your comments with peers on social media “We will continue to hammer away on this point between now and the (spring) federal budget,” Quebec Finance Minister Carlos Leitao said after emerging from a federal-provincial meeting in Ottawa. “I noticed that Mr. Oliver showed some openness, (but) there were no extravagant promises, either.” Ontario Minister Charles Sousa called on the federal government to match infrastructure spending pledges by the provinces — even if it means taking out loans. He said Ontario has committed $130 billion to infrastructure in the province over the next 10 years. The federal government, meanwhile, says it has allocated $75 billion for infrastructure across Canada over the same time period. “We’re asking the federal government to increase that pool of funds for the benefit of these projects overall — $70 billion is not enough when you look at one province alone putting $130 billion,” Sousa said. He suggested Ottawa take advantage of currently low interest rates to borrow for the projects, which would not have a significant budgetary impact because they would be capital investments. “We’re calling on the federal government to be a little more assertive in that regard,” said Sousa, who noted that Ontario, Quebec and Manitoba made a joint presentation to Oliver on the merits of increased infrastructure spending. “Mr. Oliver has suggested that the timing by which further infrastructure spending would occur would happen when he has more certainty, I presume, with the global economy. But it’s exactly contrary to what’s been suggested by so many other economists and specialists, including (Bank of Canada) governor (Stephen) Poloz.” Before the meeting, Oliver said the Harper government had made record infrastructure investments. He also said the Conservative government had transferred more cash to the provinces than its previous administrations. On Monday, Oliver also announced increases to federal transfers to the provinces next year, bringing the total to almost $67.9 billion — up from about $64.8 billion last year. “These financial payments are only one part of our partnership with provinces,” said Oliver, who pointed to its infrastructure promises, including the $53-billion New Building Canada Plan. “We’ve also, for example, made historic investments in infrastructure and we will invest over $75 billion in infrastructure over the next decade.” A spokesman for Oliver later said the federal government helps fund these projects, but noted the provinces and municipalities are responsible for more than 95 per cent of public infrastructure. The transfer payments announced Monday, which included health, social and equalization payments, would mean 20 cents out of every tax dollar paid to the federal government in 2015-16 will be handed over to provinces and territories, Oliver said. The figures said Ontario, Canada’s most populous province, will receive about $1.25 billion more in federal transfer payments next year. Sousa criticized Ottawa for “shortchanging” Ontario last year, but he said the transfer figures for 2015-16 will put the province where it should be. “Notwithstanding that, it’s important for us to move forward,” Sousa said. “This enables us to do that.” Leitao was satisfied with the sum due to Quebec next year: more than $20.3 billion. That amount includes equalization money because Quebec is a so-called “have-not” province. “I hope that one day, ideally, we are no longer eligible for such a program,” Leitao said. “But we still are, so that means our fiscal capacity is still lower than the Canadian average.” At least one provincial minister was disappointed with his transfer number. New Brunswick Finance Minister Roger Melanson said while there will be 4.5 per cent growth in transfer funding nationally, his province will only see an increase of 1.7 per cent — to around $2.6 billion. During the talks, the finance ministers also heard from Poloz and explored the potential consequences of sinking oil prices, which has contributed to the falling dollar. Some provinces will see benefits from the low price of crude in the form of cheap gas at the pump and a better environment for exporters. On the other hand, the bottom lines of oil-producing provinces and the federal government have taken financial hits from the rapid fall in crude prices. On balance, experts say the sharp drop in oil prices since the summer has been a net negative for Canada. On Monday, oil was below US$56 a barrel, compared to its US$107 price tag in June. Oliver said his department is monitoring price changes closely, but he maintained Ottawa is still on track to run a budgetary surplus next year. He wouldn’t say how low oil would have to go before the federal government could no longer be able to fulfil that promise. “I’m not prepared to come up with a number at this point,” Oliver said. “I don’t want to engage in negative hypotheticals. The oil market is quite volatile now and I don’t want to make any assumptions about further declines.”last_img read more

FABTECH set for 35,000 attendees

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POLICE TRY TO TRACE PYJAMA PENSIONER – DALBEATTIE

first_imgAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to LinkedInLinkedInLinkedIn****REQUEST FOR INFORMATION****Police from Dalbeattie are keen to trace an elderly male who was seen in Balliol View, Dalbeattie about 0230 hours, on Thursday 22 September 2016. This male was wearing only pyjamas and looked to be lost.If you have any information regarding the identity of this male or observed anyone fitting this description please contact Constable Elliot at Dalbeattie Police Station on 101.last_img read more

Exodus FC & Sagicor South East win in DFA National Leagues

first_img 209 Views   no discussions Sharing is caring! NewsSports Exodus FC & Sagicor South East win in DFA National Leagues by: Gerald George – January 26, 2015 Tweet Sharecenter_img Title contenders Exodus FC and Sagicor South East both recorded important wins as action continued in the DFA National Leagues over the weekend.In the LIME Premier League on Sunday, 25 January 2015, Randolph Peltier scored a hat-trick to pilot Exodus ZFZC to a 4-1 win over Aicons FC at the Poree playing field and placed one hand on the trophy. Odel Robin scored the other goal for Exodus andLen Walter scored for Aicons.Earlier Scotia Bank Bath Estate came from being two goals down to edge out Harlem United 3-2. Kurlson Benjamin, Delroy Parker and Hubert Prince scored for Bath Estate while Errol Blaize and Kerry Alleyne scored for Harlem. Meanwhile, at the Benjamin Park in Portsmouth, defending champions Northern Concrete & Steel Bombers with a goal each from Kevin George, Dowan Leblanc, Eddie Thomas and Yanel Joseph defeated Mahaut Soca Strikers 4- nil while at the Dublanc Playing Field. Sagicor South East kept their championship hopes alive with a 2-1 win over Dublanc FC. Pharo Cuffy and Josley Prince scored for south east. Briel Thomas scored for Dublanc. In the Division One League on Friday PetroCaribe Point Michel defeated Malta India Harlem United 2-0. Delbert Graham and Marcellous Raffoul scored for Point Michel. In the second match of the night, LA Stars defeated East Central 3-1. Scott Hazel found the back of the nets twice for LA stars, with Rodridge Blaize getting one. Shane Seraphin scored the lone goal for east central. While at the Dublanc playing field, Itassi United edged out Nemesis 3-2. Sherwin Brumant and Brian Leblanc scored for Itassi with the other goal coming from a Nemesis player. Akel Letang and Kelly George scored for Nemesis. On Sunday Sign Man All Stars hammared RC Doctors 4-0 at the Bath Estate playing field. Terry Jerome scored twice for Sign Man with one each from Jerome Lovel and kimon Jno Baptiste. And in the DOMLEC Women’s League on Sunday Bombers Starlights won by default over South East Stars. Share Sharelast_img read more

Incoming Caricom chairman outlines vision

first_img Share NewsPoliticsRegional Incoming Caricom chairman outlines vision by: Caribbean Media Corporation – January 2, 2016 Sharing is caring! Tweet 291 Views   no discussionscenter_img Share Share BARROW… looks forward to increasing the pace both of the reform process and the implementation of the Community Strategic Plan 2015-2019GEORGETOWN, Guyana (CMC) — Incoming chairman of the Caribbean Community (Caricom), Prime Minister of Belize Dean Barrow, has promised to improve the quest of the regional organisation to improve the standard of living and to provide a “safe, viable and prosperous Caribbean Community”.Barrow, who assumed chairmanship on January 1, taking over from Prime Minister Fruendel Stuart of Barbados, said the grouping will commit to building on past successes and to become more efficient in the face of the “sternest economic test that member states have had to face in recent memory.”In his message to start the new year, Barrow said he looks forward to increasing the pace both of the reform process and the implementation of the Community Strategic Plan 2015-2019.“The plan, which is designed to build Caricom’s economic, environmental, social and technological resilience, has the Caricom Single Market and Economy (CSME) as an important vehicle in that drive for greater resilience,” he said.Barrow also said governance arrangements in the region will be more flexible and dynamic.“We will be continuing efforts in the coming year to revise those arrangements for our integration movement to become more effective and relevant to the needs of our people.”Concerning the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ), he has resolved to encourage more member states to join Belize, Barbados, Dominica, and Guyana in making the Caribbean Court of Justice their final court.“In my view, another relevant factor in the lives of our people is the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ). The creation of our own jurisprudence will help define us as a people, and the excellent, well-reasoned judgements which have been the hallmark of the CCJ are ample proof of the intellectual quality of the legal minds of this Community. During my stewardship of the Community, I look forward to more member states joining the four of us in the Appellate Jurisdiction of the CCJ.”He emphasised the strength in unity in achieving Caricom’s plans, exemplifying the manner in which it rallied to attain the objectives of the three major international conferences in the past year, most recently at COP21 in Paris.“The binding decisions taken on Financing for Development, the 2030 Development Goals and Climate Change have great potential to boost our growth and development and bolster our resilience. It is therefore in our interest to use our coordinated foreign policy to advocate at every opportunity for urgent implementation of those decisions. In so doing we will be seeking the support of our International Development Partners as well as other Small Island and Low-lying Coastal Developing States,” the incoming chairman stated.last_img read more