OTTAWA, Nov. 15, 2013 /CNW/ - The Honourable Bernard Valcourt, Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development, announced today that new funding to support infrastructure projects in First Nation communities through the Gas Tax Fund (GTF) will be available in 2014-2015.
"Our Government is proud to invest in important infrastructure projects everywhere in Canada, including in First Nation communities," said Minister Valcourt. "I join with my federal colleagues in marking the growing success of the Gas Tax Funding in ensuring communities both on and off reserve become stronger, safer and healthier."
The Government of Canada has made permanent the $2 billion a year in funding under the Gas Tax fund. As announced in Economic Action Plan 2013, funding from the Gas Tax Fund component of the Community Improvement Fund will be allocated, beginning in 2014-2015, to the Department's First Nation Infrastructure Fund (FNIF) to provide support for investments in First Nation infrastructure projects on reserve. Funding of $155 million over 10 years will also be allocated from the National Infrastructure Component of the new Building Canada Fund to the First Nation Infrastructure Fund that is managed by Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada.
By continuing to fund this highly successful, targeted program on a permanent basis the Government of Canada and First Nations will be positioned to continue to work on their mutual goals of developing meaningful partnerships, fostering sustainable First Nation communities and supporting stronger, safer and healthier communities.
The FNIF goes to support infrastructure projects in five categories including energy, solid waste, planning and skills development, roads and bridges, and connectivity. The FNIF funded 434 infrastructure improvement projects on reserve between 2007 and 2013, for a total investment of $240.7 million. These included upgrading roads on Fisher River Cree Nation in Manitoba; building a transfer station at Louis Bull Tribe in Alberta; upgrading roads and improving the solid waste transfer station at Mistawasis First Nation in Saskatchewan; and building a new landfill for Nisichawayasihk Cree Nation in Manitoba's Nelson House community.
There are a growing number of success stories on reserves across Canada which are not only helping to enhance infrastructure but these improvements are creating jobs, promoting productivity, supporting economic growth and building community pride.
SOURCE Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada