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Published by: api-198621135 on Mar 28, 2013
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09/28/2013

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Engineers Canada: Federal Budget Highlights 2013
 The federal budget was tabled in the House of Commons on March 21, 2013, by Ministerof Finance Jim Flaherty.
In its pre-budget submission, Engineers Canada recommended the following:
Infrastructure
A sustainable, strategic, long-term infrastructure plan, in place by 2014, to
help maintain Canada’s
economic competitiveness and maintain our quality of life.The plan should include proper asset management, emphasize the importance of core publicinfrastructure, and considers the vulnerability of key assets to extreme weather events
Skills
The federal government must work with provinces and territories to focus on supporting science,technology, engineering and mathematics education at all levels and with special emphasis onpromoting diversity.Federally supported targeted outreach and support programs for women and for Indigenous people thatrun from kindergarten to university would give the country access to previously untapped humanresources.Engineers Canada has advised government on several occasions of a projected 95,000 retirements of professional engineers by 2020.
Research and Development
The federal government must continue to improve its support for research and development. Therecommendations of the Expert Review Panel on Research and Development were aimed at improvingthe commercial potential of research and development in Canada. By providing support, the federalgovernment can help our innovators create products and businesses that promote growth and jobcreation.
Today’s budget included the following measures of interest to our constituent associations
and reflective of our key positions
 
 
Creating a New Building Canada Plan
 Federal funding for infrastructure proposed in the budget contains over $53 billion in investments, of which over $47 billion is in new funding over 10 years starting in 2014
 –
15, for provincial, territorialand local infrastructure, including:
o
 
$32.2 billion through a Community Improvement Fund consisting of an indexed Gas Tax Fundand the incremental Goods and Services Tax Rebate for Municipalities to build roads, publictransit, recreational facilities and other community infrastructure across Canada that willimprove the quality of life of Canadians.
o
 
The Gas Tax fund will be indexed at 2 percent per year starting in 2014-15, with increases tobe applied in $100-million increments.
o
 
$14 billion for a new Building Canada Fund to support major economic projects that havea national, regional and local significance.
o
 
$1.25 billion for a renewed P3 Canada Fund to continue supporting innovative ways to buildinfrastructure projects faster and provide better value for Canadian taxpayers throughpublic-private partnerships.
o
 
$6 billion in federal support to provinces, territories and municipalities under currentinfrastructure programs in 2014
 –
15 and beyond.
 
Approximately $7 billion over 10 years in First Nations infrastructure such as roads, bridges, energysystems and other First Nations infrastructure priorities.
 
Over $10 billion in investments in federal infrastructure assets, including bridges, fishing harbours,ports, military bases and departmental accommodations across the country.The total investment should result in $70 billion in federal infrastructure funding over 10 years,
Connecting Canadians with Available Jobs
 The federal government will work with provinces and territories to examine the use of practical tests asa method of assessment and harmonize requirements, introduce measures that will support the use of apprentices through federal construction and maintenance contracts, as well as the Investmentin Affordable Housing and infrastructure projects.
 
Provide support to groups that are underrepresented in the job market such as persons withdisabilities, youth, Aboriginal peoples and newcomers by:
o
 
Enhancing skills training opportunities for Canadians with disabilities through a newgeneration of Labour Market Agreements for Persons with Disabilities that will be introducedby 2014, and reforming and extending the Opportunities Fund to provide more demand-driven training solutions for persons with disabilities.

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