March 23, 2017
Yesterday afternoon, Canada’s Minister of Finance the Honourable Bill Morneau tabled Budget 2017: Building a Strong Middle Class. Following in the footsteps of our government’s first budget, Budget 2017 offers immediate help to those who need it most and helps ensure that everyone has a real and fair chance of success.
Canada continues to have the best fiscal position among G7 countries. The government is committed to providing the support our economy needs in a fiscally responsible way, while maintaining Canada’s fundamental fiscal strength by ensuring that the debt-to-GDP ratio remains low.
MP Michael McLeod is especially pleased to see the commitment of our government in Budget 2017 to: provide for increased investment in housing; investment in quality and affordable child care; support for green energy and ongoing investments in Indigenous programs.
“There are a lot of investments in the Budget for the North that I am excited to see”, said Mr. McLeod, who campaigned on increased investments in housing. “I am very happy to see the additional investment of $36 million in housing for the Northwest Territories”.
As a vocal advocate for funding for friendship centres, adult basic education and early childhood learning programs, Mr. McLeod added, “I am also very pleased to see so many investments in areas that are priorities for my constituents. This funding will have a direct impact on improving the lives of northerners.”
Highlights from Budget 2017 include:
– $28.4 million over four years, starting in 2017–18, to renew and expand the Territorial Health Investment Fund;
– An additional $400 million in an Arctic Energy Fund to address energy security for communities north of the 60th parallel, including Indigenous communities;
– $14.7 million over three years starting in 2017–18 to extend and enhance the Northern Adult Basic Education Program;
– $25 million over five years, starting in 2017–18, to support a pilot Indigenous Guardians Program to facilitate partnership with Indigenous communities in monitoring ecological health, maintaining cultural sites, and protecting sensitive areas and species;
– $7 billion over 10 years across Canada, starting in 2018–19, to support and create more high-quality, affordable child care spaces across the country. A portion of this investment will be dedicated to early learning and child care programs for Indigenous children living on- and off-reserve.
– To help connect northern communities to trade and investment opportunities, investments will also be made to resolve critical transportation needs in Canada’s north, from the $10.1 Billion announced in the 2016 Fall Economic Statement.
Office of Michael McLeod