Sask. Premier Scott Moe Make Two Funding Announcements, Comments On COVID-19 Vaccines

On Monday Premier Scott Moe announced the second highest amount ever, targeted towards the Municipal Revenue Sharing Program.

Moe announced Saskatchewan municipalities will benefit from more than $275 million in 2021-22. The Premier says this provincial funding for municipalities will provide local leaders the flexibility and adaptability to invest in their community’s current key priorities.

The province reports the annual provincial funding amount for the program is based on three quarters of one point of the provincial sales tax revenue collected from two years prior.

$1.6 million of the Municipal Revenue Sharing Program will be invested in the Targeted Sector Support Initiative. This will support municipal projects aimed at good governance, regional planning and inter-community collaboration.

The province states more than $3.4 billion has been allocated through the program since 2007.


UHCP Sees Multi-Million Dollar Addition

Smaller Saskatchewan cities will see more funding this year to improve nearby highway conditions.  Moe also made the announcement Monday, that the province is making an additional $3 million in funding available for the Urban Highway Connector Program (UHCP).

Premier Scott Moe believes the funding boost will create jobs, enhance safety and support transportation infrastructure in Saskatchewan municipalities.  The funding will see the UHCP upped to $10 million over two years.  The UHCP was created in 2008 to provide stable funding and service levels on highways within city limits that connect to the provincial networks.

The province reports in the past the UHCP funded significant rehabilitation projects in Regina, Estevan, and Yorkton in the 2020-21 budget year, along with lighting upgrades in Lloydminster and starting a regional planning project in the Swift Current area.  After a review of UHCP towns and cities, one of the most significant changes is the Ministry of Highways assuming 100 per cent of the maintenance and rehabilitation costs for urban connectors in Saskatchewan towns as of April 1, 2021.

The province says the additional funding should provide major improvements on many of Saskatchewan’s busiest urban highways.


Moe on COVID-19 Vaccinations

Scott Moe says no matter how severe lock-downs and public measures are, they are not going to end this pandemic.  During the Municipalities of Saskatchewan Virtual Convention, Moe told delegates those are simply stop gap measures to help get to the finish line.  “Life will get back to normal when we achieve that finish line, which is wide-scale vaccination.  Yes, we are making some progress, thanks to the incredible effort by our front-line staff at the Saskatchewan Health Authority and other health care providers.”

Moe suggests Saskatchewan got it’s initial supply of vaccines into people’s arms faster than any other province in Canada.  He also placed blame on the Federal government for over-promising and under-delivering when it came to supplying the vaccine in a timely fashion.  Moe says he does remain optimistic in the coming weeks when shipments from the Federal government are predicted to pick up, adding more details on a mass vaccination plan will be revealed Tuesday.


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