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Prime Minister Trudeau announces $19 billion in COVID-19 recovery funding for provinces

PRIME MINISTER TRUDEAU ANNOUNCES $19 BILLION IN
COVID-19 RECOVERY FUNDING FOR PROVINCES 

Dear colleagues,

We are pleased that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has officially announced details on the Safe Restart Agreement, providing $19 billion to provinces, territories and municipalities to safely restart their respective economies as well as prepare for a potential second wave of COVID-19 this fall.

The new agreement will run for six to eight months and could exceed $20 billion with provincial matching funds included in the framework. The negotiation of this funding has been months in the making and had originally been pegged at $14 billion over six months with various strings attached for the provinces.

The Canadian Construction Association (CCA) has been pressing for support to provinces and municipalities so they may take advantage of federal infrastructure funding programs. CCA understands that part of the agreement will cover money for municipalities to upgrade transit and to cover fiscal gaps created by loss of revenue – which will help municipalities invest in infrastructure.  Costs for transit upgrades in municipalities shall be shared evenly between the federal and provincial governments.

Also included is funding to support health & safety, such as increased COVID-19 testing and contact tracing capacity, further procurement of PPE, additional contributions to provincial health care systems, as well as funding for childcare and national sick leave benefits.

This news follows previous announcements this week that the federal government has reached an agreement with the United States to keep the border closed until August 21, 2020 and that the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy has now been extended until December 2020.

CCA is continuing to advocate for relief of COVID-19 costs on federal projects and for a flexible, distributed and multi-year stimulus funding that is responsive to regional needs.  This announcement is a step in the right direction.  We will continue to monitor the rollout of the Safe Restart Agreement and will provide further updates with regards to our advocacy efforts.

If you have any questions or comments about this release, please contact our vice-president of public affairs, Rodrigue Gilbert, at rgilbert@cca-acc.com or 613-236-9455, ext. 432.

Best regards,

Mary Van Buren, MBA, CAE
President
Canadian Construction Association
1900 – 275 Slater Street Ottawa ON K1P 5H9
613-236-9455, ext. 414

Article by Lena Hogarth
July 21, 2020

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