Municipalities Newfoundland and Labrador Welcomes Increase to Municipal Operating Grants in Provincial Budget 2023
For Immediate Release
March 23, 2023
Municipalities Newfoundland and Labrador (MNL) welcomes the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador’s progress toward valuing municipalities as equal partners in today’s budget. Municipal Operating Grants (MOGs) will increase by $3 million this year and an additional $3 million in 2024.
In advance of Budget 2023, MNL was clear on the need for the Provincial Government to more fully support the 275 municipalities in our province, over 75 percent of which are small towns with fewer than 1000 people. MOGs have remained at $22 million over the past eight years, despite the realities of increasing costs to run services, programs and support municipal infrastructure. The COVID-19 pandemic and related inflationary pressures have had a direct impact on municipal budgets. Our ask of a $6-million increase to MOGs addresses inflation since rates were last adjusted in 2015.
MNL’s pre-budget advocacy campaign emphasized the importance of long-term municipal infrastructure planning and called for greater transparency around infrastructure spending. Budget 2023 infrastructure spending commitments under the Municipal Capital Works and the Multi-Year Capital Works Programs, as well as the Federal-Provincial Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program, are necessary. MNL looks forward to more information on how and where strategic long-term infrastructure spending decision-making is made.
MNL continues to advocate for regionalization. Our members need a formalized structure, led and resourced by the provincial government, for implementing a regional approach.
“The announcement of an additional $6 million in Municipal Operating Grants over two years is a step in the right direction to support municipal fiscal stability in our province. Municipalities cannot do more with less. Over the past few years, this has been their reality and it is no longer acceptable. We need longer-term stable, planned approaches for ensuring that the province’s most important partners, our members, are secure to do the important work they do every day. We look forward to working with the Provincial Government on a fair and equitable distribution of MOGs to eligible members, and we will continue to push for our other advocacy priorities.” – Amy Coady, President, MNL.