Changes to New Deal Gas Tax Funding
Therefore be it resolved that SUMA urge the Government of Saskatchewan to negotiate with the Government of Canada the second five year period of the New Deal Gas Tax funding with additional terms of reference and criteria for eligible projects that include unconditional funding allocations and an expanded list of municipal capital expenditures including all expenditure code items listed on the Government Relations Five Year Capital Works template for municipalities, to ensure that all Saskatchewan municipalities receive the full benefit of this federal program.
Response: In August 2005, the provincial government signed a bilateral agreement with the federal government on the transfer of federal gas tax revenues under the New Deal for Cities and Communities which provides $147.7 million of new federal funding to Saskatchewan municipalities over the first five years of the ten year agreement. In advance of the agreement negotiations and during the negotiation process, significant work was undertaken through the Municipal Forum, of which the Saskatchewan Urban Municipalities Association (SUMA) is a participant. The work of the Municipal Forumâ€™s working committee guided the provinceâ€™s negotiation of the agreement and resulted in an agreement that both meets the federal governmentâ€™s objectives for the New Deal and the federal gas tax funding which also accommodating the needs of Saskatchewan communities. There is an agreement renewal clause whereby federal and provincial governments have agreed to review the terms and conditions of the gas tax agreement by August 2009. As well, the federal and provincial governments have agreed to complete a joint evaluation of the expenditures under the agreement and seek the input of municipalities during the evaluation process. Municipal feedback, such as the feedback provided through this resolution, will be taken into account during the evaluation. In the 2007 federal budget, there is a financial commitment of an additional $2 billion per year for four years (2010-11 through to 2013-14), thereby confirming federal funding for nine years of the ten year agreement.