Wednesday, January 31, 2024

Skeena-Bulkley Valley MP keeps Prince Rupert water funding request of notice in the House of Commons

Skeena-Bulkley Valley MP Taylor Bachrach
reprised his calls for Federal funding for Prince Rupert's
water infrastructure issues

City of Prince Rupert officials will be pleased to know that their quest for over 80 million dollars in Federal funding for water infrastructure is still on the radar in Ottawa, that as Skeena-Bukley Valley MP Taylor Bachrach noted of the city's application as part of the Tuesday House of Commons session and the importance that infrastructure has for municipal governments.

His comments came in the afternoon portion of the House of Commons yesterday, part of an exchange with Liberal MP Francesco Sorbara, who is a former resident of Prince Rupert. He noted of the global standing for the Port and the community.

click on above to enlarge

Former Rupertite Frranceso Sorbara, now a resident of
Vaughn, Ontario and the MP for that Ontario riding

Later in the same session, Bachrach was taking up the issue of infrastructure with Conservative MP's, the Skeena-Bulkley Valley MP noting of the recent visit to the North Coast by Conservative leader Pierre Poilievre.

click on above to enlarge

Conservative MP Monty Morantz replied with a glimpse as to how the Conservatives view the partnership between Federal and Municipal governments.

click on above to enlarge

The Focus for the MPs on the day, was debate and discussion on the topics of Bill C59 related to affordable housing and the Fall Economic Statements, items of note that Mr. Bacharch again addressed towards the end of the Tuesday session.

click on above to enlarge

Since the return to City Hall following the holiday period, Prince Rupert Mayor Herb Pond and City Council have not provided any updates on the progress of the city's funding request with the Federal government.

You can review all of those commentaries through the House of Commons video archive, starting at the 16:35 point of the discussion on the Bill. Other contributions come at the 16:46 mark and again at 18:15

More notes related to the House of Commons can be reviewed here.


  1. North South trade?
    When was the last time Sorbara came for a visit?

    Our MP needs to call out Sean Fraser directly on the DMAF funding, not some Ontario MP who happens to be from Rupert.

    Fraser's team needs to be held accountable. He has been cabinet minster since July and other than some facebook content from question period in Ottawa, there have been no updates.

    1. Canada is a big country. Most municipalities have their hand out. Prince Rupert administration thinks we are a special case. Every other municipality is special in their eyes also.

  2. Mr Sorbara was not talking about North South trade, he was rightly pointing out that Prince Rupert is important because it is a major port on the west coast of the Americas. His support on the committee should be welcomed not dismissed.
    Hopefully funds come through before the next election. It doesn't sound like infrastructure funding is very high on the Conservative agenda or that they even understand the problem.

    1. You do realize that this is a request for federal disaster funding.

      The $82 million the city is seeking is coming from a $3 billion fund.
      Whose money is in that fund? Canadian taxpayers.

      This is yet another example of the inept and inefficient NDP/Liberal partnership.

    2. Your questions are rhetorical; gaslighting.
      I think that the quoted statement by the Conservative MP (Monty Morantz) provides some insight. He characterizes the request as an 'infrastructure priority' that the municipality decides for itself. He adds that a Poilievre government would "reward" municipalities that build houses. He does not appear to regard the state of Prince Rupert's water infrastructure as a problem of national consequence for which "disaster funding" is appropriate, either now or under a future Conservative government. He may not be the only one that holds that view. The City may not have succeeded in making its case.

    3. Yes, but the city continues as if the money is a sure thing. It's time to re-evaluate McCarthys 5-million-dollar outlay.

    4. Rhetorical questions aren't really questions at all, in that they don't expect an answer.

      As for gaslighting, there is no manipulation of ones reality, perception, or memories from this anonymous commentator.

      Our Mayor has described our water situation as Armageddon during interviews.
      Our MP stands up in Ottawa and states that a water system collapse is imminent.

      For over six plus months, feedback from Ottawa goes like this, we acknowledge the problem, we want to partner and collaborate, the port is so important, we have your backs Prince Rupert.

      The current federal government cannot put pen to paper and commit to a date and amount.

      That is why change is needed in this riding and in Ottawa.

    5. It's not a sure thing at all, it looks more like an uphill fight for Taylor Bachrach. It's also clear if Pierre Poilievre passed on anything to the Conservative caucus from his visit it wasn't that Prince Rupert should get tens of millions for water infrastructure.

    6. The change you're talking about is to a Poilievre party that literally describes federal support for needed water infrastructure as a "reward" for supporting its political narrative. Prince Rupert council is not a "gatekeeper" blocking housing development.

    7. The current grant process that the federal government has in place is mismanaged, bloated and inefficient.

      Some would say that the conservatives will find efficiencies to get those funds out to cities quicker. Similar to when the 2008 economic downturn took place.

      On to housing,
      Prince Rupert has averaged 19 housing starts a year since 2013.

      British Columbia Housing Starts for Urban Areas and Communities

      Given that trendline, there is work to be done to get a carrot.

      Less muskeg talk, more partnerships like the one our City Manager brought forward in Seal Cove. Which was announced two years ago and little progress has been made.

  3. Funding for critical water infrastructure to ensure public health and safety is a necessity, not a "carrot" to be traded for.

    1. The carrot reference was to housing not infrastructure.
      The current government takes its time handing out infrastructure carrots to cities because of its bloated inefficient grant system that consumes scarce civic resources.
      But somehow expedites them for trade initiatives.
      Better headlines

    2. I'm not aware of the current government handing out "carrots" of any kind. It's Poilievre who is saying that infrastructure funding will be tied to municipalities meeting his housing targets when he takes power, i.e. that's a "carrot" or as Monty Morantz puts it infrastructure funding will be a "reward" for building houses. Of course, how municipalities are to do that is not clear; the city makes planning decisions; it does not build houses or control the housing market.

  4. The water and SEWAGE systems in Prince Rupert are both extreme needs of the community that have been disregarded for decades. The lack of an industrial tax base is the largest contributor to the lack of Municipal Government funding (which is what most communities in Canada rely on) for local water and sewage. But the bigger current issue is the collapse of existing water lines that cannot be repaired while this federal government grant is being processed (at an inefficient pace). In addition with sewage being pumped into the ocean, this is a natural disaster!! Wtf takes the current government so much time… could it be bureaucracy?? The solution is to get rid of the red tape in the government! The only answer is: a Conservative Government!