John Rafferty MP tables Private Members Motion

House of Commons Parliament Ottawa
John Rafferty MP
John Rafferty MP

OTTAWA – John Rafferty MP for Thunder Bay-Rainy River has tabled a Private Members Motion in the House of Commons today which would establish a permanent Rural Infrastructure Fund to assist small municipalities across Canada in the development, repair, and upgrading of their core physical infrastructure.

John Rafferty MP – Rural Communities at a disadvantage

“I’ve heard from many elected officials and community leaders across our region and it is clear that small rural communities are at a disadvantage when it comes to building and maintaining their infrastructure,” Rafferty said. “There simply isn’t the property tax base to draw from in small towns like Fort Frances or Atikokan compared to larger and more densely populated cities like Toronto, Montreal, or Winnipeg.  We need to level the playing field when it comes to infrastructure spending.”

The wording of Rafferty’s motion is as follows:   

“That, in the opinion of the House, the government should consider working with all levels of government to establish a long-term Rural Infrastructure Fund spanning a period of 20 years to assist rural municipalities with populations of ten thousand residents or less, in their efforts to develop, repair and upgrade core public infrastructure.”

With both the Municipal Rural Infrastructure Fund and the Building Canada Fund set to expire Rafferty’s proposal could serve as the successor program for rural municipalities.  “We need predictable, strategic, and long-term funding for small rural communities to assist their economic development efforts and to raise the quality of life for their residents.”

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