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 March 2017      

 

Infrastructure: Show me the money! 

 

ACEC briefs MPs on need to accelerate program, offers assistance

There is a need to accelerate infrastructure investments and streamline the application process according to separate reports by the Parliamentary Budget Officer (PBO) and a Senate Committee. This confirms the message being delivered by ACEC that consulting engineering firms in many parts of the country are not yet seeing the increased activity one would expect as a result of infrastructure announcements over the past three years. Even prior to PBO and Senate reports, ACEC president and CEO John Gamble has been meeting one-on-one with Members of Parliament on the House of Commons Transportation, Infrastructure and Communities Committee to share the industry’s concern and to offer its advice and assistance in making the federal infrastructure program more effective. Mr. Gamble was also interviewed by the Globe and Mail on timeliness of promised infrastructure commitments as a result of the PBO and Senate reports. In the Globe and Mail story, Mr. Gamble is quoted as saying that “We’re very excited and very supportive of… the largest infrastructure investment in Canadian history. However, in practical terms, we have just not seen the corresponding level of design activity so far.”

MPs have been very receptive to the overtures made by ACEC and to recommendations made by ACEC in its written pre-budget submission to the Minister of Finance which can be viewed here. And while ACEC is pleased with the federal government’s commitment to infrastructure investments of $186 billion over the next twelve years, ACEC looks forward to working with Transportation, Infrastructure and Communities Committee and Infrastructure Canada on the implementation of the infrastructure program to ensure it is efficient and effective. While the consulting engineering sector would definitely benefit from a more effective and efficient program, the real beneficiaries of infrastructure investments are Canadians, the Canadian economy and the environment.

ACEC will be preparing a brief on highlights the federal budget exclusively for ACEC members.