Authors: J. Robert Black, K.C., Kevin Mehi
On June 19, 2020, the Government of Alberta announced $200 million in grant funding will be made available to assist municipalities in Alberta with the costs of certain transportation infrastructure and water/wastewater projects.
The Government of Alberta estimates that the increase in grant funding will support a total of 124 projects in the province. $50 million of the grant funds will be made available to municipalities through the provincial government’s existing Strategic Transportation Infrastructure Program, while the remaining $150 million will be made available to municipalities through its Alberta Municipal Water/Wastewater Partnership.
Strategic Transportation Infrastructure Program
The Strategic Transportation Infrastructure Program will provide a total of $50 million in funding to municipalities through four (4) streams:
- the “Community Airport Program”, which provides funding of up to 75% of the costs of projects involving the rehabilitation and improvement of community-owned, public-use airports;
- the “Local Road Bridge Program”, which provides funding of up to 75% of the costs of projects involving the rehabilitation and maintenance of bridges and bridge-sized culverts on municipal roads;
- the “Resource Road Program”, which provides funding of up to 50% of the costs of projects involving the building or improvement of road infrastructure that supports industrial and economic growth; and
- the “Local Municipal Initiatives”, which provides funding (on a case by case basis) for local transportation infrastructure projects.
Municipalities may apply to Alberta Transportation until November 30 of each year for funding in the following year. Proposed projects are rated and evaluated based on the following eligibility criteria:
- basic need;
- impacts on the overall transportation network;
- the current condition of the infrastructure;
- total traffic volumes;
- truck traffic volumes;
- cost effectiveness and efficiency;
- collaboration or partnership with industry or other municipalities or Métis Settlements;
- economic, social, environmental or innovation benefits; and
- use of alternate sources to fund the project (federal or private investment).
If you have any questions regarding the Strategic Transportation Infrastructure Program or the eligibility of any particular project, or if you need assistance with an application, we would be pleased to assist you. More information regarding eligibility and application can be found here.
Water Infrastructure Grants
The $150 million in funding for water and wastewater improvement projects includes a total of $137 million allocated to the Alberta Municipal Water/Wastewater Partnership (“AMWWP”).
The AMWWP is designed to provide municipalities with funding of up to 75% of the costs of projects involving the construction of municipal facilities for water supply and treatment, and wastewater treatment and disposal. Eligible projects include:
Water supply and treatment
- raw-water intakes and wells;
- raw-water supply lines to storage facilities;
- raw-water storage facilities;
- raw-water supply lines from storage facilities to treatment facilities;
- water treatment facilities;
- treated-water supply line from the treatment plant to the first connection point on the distribution system;
- treated-water storage facilities and related works;
- outfall sewer from last connection point on the collection system to the wastewater treatment facilities;
- wastewater treatment facilities;
- outfall sewers from the wastewater facilities to the point of discharge or disposal and related works;
- septage receiving stations at wastewater treatment plants;
- small in situ projects to enhance the treatment process (g. chlorination or fluoridation);
- planning and/or design studies directly related to an eligible project; and
- general municipal infrastructure planning studies for eligible municipalities under 10,000 population.
Generally, municipalities must carry out such projects on a contract basis using services, materials and equipment from the private sector. Costs that are eligible for funding include engineering and construction costs, as well as various ancillary and related costs (such as survey fees, right-of-way acquisitions, advertising for tenders, legal fees and audit fees), but do not include items such as municipal labour costs and administrative costs.
In addition to this, municipalities may apply for funding for studies to review or identify water or wastewater needs (including Preliminary engineering assessments and engineering studies), and for funding to implement projects that support water conservation and consumption-based water rate schedules.
Municipalities may apply to Alberta Transportation until November 30 of each year for funding in the following year.
If you have any questions regarding the AMWWP or the eligibility of any particular project, or if you need assistance with an application, we would be pleased to assist you. More information regarding eligibility and application can be found here.