Green Party proposes Super Six fix for municipal infrastructure
Date: Thursday, March 29 2007
The Green Party today unveiled a $3 billion-a-year plan to create six municipal superfunds...
The Green Party today unveiled a $3 billion-a-year plan to create six municipal superfunds that will fund the reconstruction of crumbling municipal infrastructure and transform Canada’s cities and towns into green and vibrant communities.
Delivering the first policy announcement from the party’s new platform at the contaminated Domtar brownfields in Cochrane, Alberta, Green Party leader Elizabeth May said that the Super Six superfund initiative is a simple, clear and decisive plan to develop green solutions to urgent and long-standing municipal infrastructure needs.
“It’s time to reinvest in communities,” said Ms. May. “We need to rectify the fiscal and infrastructure deficit facing municipalities by bringing all levels of government together around the key concerns of health, safety and a clean environment.”
The Green Party proposes replacing the obsolete and generic Canada Strategic Infrastructure Fund with separate funds to target six specific areas of municipal concern: brownfield remediation, water and wastewater treatment facilities, sports and recreation facilities, mass transit, cycling and pedestrian promotion, and affordable housing.
“It’s a larger strategy for ensuring that all Canadian communities get the opportunity to have clean water, better transit and affordable housing,” said Sean Maw, candidate for Wild Rose and the Green Party’s Community Development Advocate.
“Every municipality in the country has its own problems, not just those cities that need an extended subway line. In Alberta alone, communities need federal commitments to cleaning up brownfields like the one here in Cochrane, Calgary’s mass transit is overcrowded and Fort McMurray desperately needs housing and other services.”
The Green Party’s Green Municipal Infrastructure plan is based on the belief that local government has the potential to be the driving force for improving the environment and the quality of life of Canadians. Creating opportunities for municipalities to clean up the local environment, promote more physically active lifestyles among residents and focus on energy efficient buildings and other infrastructure translates into reduced health care costs and energy consumption. These savings will then be passed on to Canadians through reduced personal taxes and better services in their communities.
“Both the previous Liberal and current Conservative governments have squandered a wonderful opportunity to partner with municipalities in a broad-based commitment to building strong and healthy communities,” said May. “The Green Party will rebuild that partnership – and our local communities – to the benefit of all Canadians.”
[Proofreader's note: this article was edited for spelling and typos on March 30, 2007]