The City of Campbell River has acquired two hybrid vehicles

Federal gas tax enhancing local environment

Locally-purchased vehicles will reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the city’s fleet and also reduce operating costs

The City of Campbell River recently added two new hybrid vehicles to the city’s fleet.

As well, important remediation work has been performed along the shoreline between the 50th Parallel Marker and Discovery Harbour to repair extensive damage from past storms.

“Providing communities with predictable, long-term funding for their local priorities is at the heart of the federal Gas Tax Fund,” said the John Duncan, Member of Parliament for Vancouver Island North. “Our government is pleased to invest in infrastructure projects that are important to Canadians, and contribute to a healthier, more sustainable environment.”

One new hybrid vehicle will serve as the Land Use Department’s field vehicle while the other will be put to good use as the Fire Department’s command vehicle. In addition to fulfilling these important roles, these locally-purchased vehicles will reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the city’s fleet and also reduce operating costs.

The purchase of these vehicles was made possible thanks to an $86,000 contribution from the federal Gas Tax Fund transfer.

A further $40,000 contribution from the federal Gas Tax Fund transfer was used to rehabilitate a section of the city’s shoreline and reduce the possibility of future erosion. The city used gravel and logs that were clogging boat ramps to nourish starved beaches at key locations.

This approach was recommended in the city’s Marine Foreshore Habitat Assessment and Restoration Plan and complies with the federal Fisheries Act and the City’s Memorandum of Understanding with the federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans.

“Projects that protect and promote a sustainable environment enrich our communities,” said Coralee Oakes, Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development. “These Gas Tax funds are supporting projects that help Campbell River achieve its Climate Action Charter goals of reducing greenhouse gas emissions, as well as foster healthy and sustainable surroundings for the enjoyment of all residents.”

“We are pleased to have received funding from the federal Gas Tax Fund for these two projects,” said Campbell River Councillor Larry Samson, who holds the environment portfolio for City Council. “The purchase of hybrid vehicles will help keep our fleet and emergency equipment up to standard. And the restored, natural shoreline will also help slow erosion, improve foreshore habitat, provide easier public access to the beach, and protect nearby City infrastructure–including roadways, sewer lines and the popular seawalk, from powerful wind and waves.”

“In order to support the range of services delivered by local governments, we need infrastructure programs with broad criteria and local determination,” said Union of BC Municipalities President Mary Sjostrom. “Campbell River’s recent projects are a good demonstration of how the Gas Tax Fund is adaptable to local needs.”

The federal Gas Tax Fund transfer provides long-term funding to municipalities across the country to build and revitalize their local infrastructure. The Government of Canada has invested over $10 billion to date in municipal infrastructure through this program, and passed legislation to make it a permanent transfer of $2 billion per year.

As part of Economic Action Plan 2013, the Government committed to index the Gas Tax Fund to provide additional funding for communities, starting in 2014. Between 2006 and 2014, British Columbia will receive more than $1.56 billion from the Gas Tax Fund transfer to improve local infrastructure.

The Union of British Columbia Municipalities (UBCM) administers the Gas Tax Fund in BC, in collaboration with Canada and British Columbia.

For additional information about federal investments in infrastructure visit www.infrastructure.gc.ca or follow them on Twitter at @INFC_eng.

For further information about Canada’s Economic Action Plan, visit www.actionplan.gc.ca.