FCM “Upbeat” says Mayor Hall
Prince George, B.C.- Back from the Federation of Canadian Municipalities AGM in Winnipeg, Prince George Mayor Lyn Hall says the mood at the conference was different “That was my fourth one, and I would say of all of them, this one was the most upbeat” says Mayor Hall. He says the mood is largely attributable to the commitment from the Federal Government for infrastructure funding for municipalities.
Infrastructure funding was a common theme at the conference in Winnipeg says Mayor Hall who adds communities still have a number of questions “What do the infrastructure dollars look like, when will they be handed out, when will projects be approved, how does that approval process look like, when will it happen?”
Hall says some of the workshops were focused on the infrastructure theme and were aimed at rural communities “One of the workshops was about asset management which was really infrastructure designed to look at various ways to manage the assets you have, to make sure you’re managing them properly and that you’re making long range plans to revitalize those projects. Interestingly enough, that’s some of the things we’re doing with our parks strategy and our facility review we’re doing, to set long term plans in place to refurbish and keep them up to par.”
The Infrastructure funding is broken down into three categories, basic, green and social and Prince George has a wish list for each one of those categories. “You take a look at some of the river reclamation work we have to do, we’ve received some funding for that and we’ll be looking for more. You take a look at the below and above ground infrastructure. We will have a better idea once our facility review is complete” That review is expected to be complete this fall.
The conference also saw Councillor Garth Frizzell re-elected as a director to the FCM, which means Prince George will have a presence on the two major municipal organizations. “Councillor Murry Krause is going to be the UBCM President for 2016-17, then we have Councillor Frizzell on the BC Caucus of the FCM” says Mayor Hall “So those are two important positions for us and bode well for the City, it means we have a voice at the table.” Both organizations have clout with senior levels of government.