| Oct 30, 2008

Oct 30/08 - Frontenac Cty Council

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Feature Article - October 30, 2008 Frontenac County has plans for provincial infrastructure moneyBy Jeff Green

A staff report to Frontenac County Council for the October 15 county council meeting has resulted in most of the $1.3 million “Invest in Ontario” windfall being put into reserve funds for various projects.

In September $250,000 had already been allocated as the county contribution to a broadband initiative in Frontenac Islands, South and Central Frontenac, and another $250,000 is being set aside for a similar initiative for North Frontenac.

A further $250,000 is being put aside for the K&P trail; $200,000 is being out aside to cover an expected upgrade to the water system at Fairmount Home, and $80,000 to cover for future ambulance projects.

Finally staff recommended that $200,000 be set aside for green initiatives.

“Invest in Ontario”, a $1.1 billion pool of surplus money from the 2007 provincial budget that is intended to help municipalities with their infrastructure needs, was announced by Premier McGuinty at a conference of the Association of Municipalities of Ontario in August.

In addition to the monies allocated to Frontenac County, the local townships received direct funding. Central Frontenac received $219,393, North Frontenac $89,667, and South Frontenac $858,381.

Two years ago a similar transfer of funds took place; that time it was called MOVE Ontario. On that occasion, Frontenac County Council decided to pass the county money directly to the townships to help with local infrastructure needs, such as road and bridge construction.

When Premier McGuinty announced the Invest in Ontario funding, he said it was unlikely there would be a similar allocation next year.

Subsequently, the province has announced it expects to run a deficit of $500 million this year.

At the October 15 county meeting, a motion to accept the staff report and to “instruct the treasurer to make the necessary allocations to the 2009 budget and to reserves as required to ensure Invest in Ontario funds are available to support infrastructure projects as discussed” was passed without comment.

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