PEI’s 2016 Budget has slashed a $1.8 million Provincial Infrastructure Fund and Island municipalities and their residents will bear the brunt of this unexpected action.
When the HST was implemented in 2013, the provincial government introduced a $1.8 million Provincial Infrastructure Fund for municipalities. This fund was intended to help compensate for rebates and exemptions for municipalities that were lost in the transition from PST to HST. This prevented those increased costs from being passed on to citizens through increases to municipal taxes or fees, or cuts to local services.
In Budget 2016, the Province eliminated the $1.8 million fund for municipalities. According to FPEIM President Bruce MacDougall, “this is another blow to municipal finances that we just can’t afford. It’s being done after our budgets have been adopted and without consultation.”