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New initiative helps communities make stronger infrastructure decisions

By ReNew Canada 07:10AM September 29, 2017

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The Government of Canada and the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) have announced a new initiative to help local governments strengthen their infrastructure investment decisions based on sound asset management practices.

FCM has awarded $3.6 million to 22 partner organizations from across the country to design and deliver local asset management training to Canadian municipalities. These partners are non-profit, non-governmental organizations from across Canada with a mandate of serving the municipal sector and are perfectly positioned to help municipalities develop and enhance their skills and knowledge taking asset management from theory into practice.

“This new initiative will help local governments plan, build and maintain their infrastructure more strategically, which will make infrastructure dollars go further,” said Amarjeet Sohi, minister of infrastructure and communities. “With a clearer vision of their long-term needs, they will be able to invest in infrastructure projects in the best way possible, benefiting Canadians for years to come.”

Between September 2017 and June 2018, 22 partner organizations across Canada will deliver 60 learning activities tailored specifically to the needs of the municipalities in the regions they serve. Through the myriad of learning opportunities being offered across the country, Canadian municipalities will gain a better understanding of the value that can be realized through formalized asset management practices, learn how to communicate those benefits to their communities, and discover new ways to implement asset management programming into daily routines. Funded activities include workshops, peer-to-peer learning activities, conference presentations, panels or webinars, coaching and mentoring (one-on-one), and courses.

For example, among the offering, the Atlantic Infrastructure Management Network will deliver a workshop tailored to elected officials at the Union of New Brunswick Municipalities annual conference on September 29th. Another example is in Manitoba where the Association of Manitoba Municipalities will create an asset management leadership committee tasked with developing a guide and delivering workshops and training. And in the Northwest Territories, the NWT Association of Communities will provide learning opportunities tailor-made for their communities in the form of short videos, a guide, a toolkit and a workshop.

“Local governments generate exceptional public value from the resources available to them,” said Jenny Gerbasi, president of FCM. “Continuing to strengthen their asset management practices will mean even stronger outcomes, both for the residents they serve and for the country we’re building together.”

Funding for the partner organizations grants is provided by the Municipal Asset Management Program (MAMP), a five-year, $50 million initiative funded by the Government of Canada and delivered by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities.

In addition to the Municipal Asset Management Program, the Government has also provided FCM with $75 million to establish the Municipalities for Climate Innovation Program (MCIP) and $625 million to establish the Green Municipal Fund (GMF).

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