PCs must put their money where the roads are


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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 18/05/2022 (377 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

Spring has finally arrived in Manitoba, and along with the warm weather and green grass, the potholes have also returned, this year worse than ever. I’ve been taking advantage of the nice weather to knock on doors and talk to constituents about their concerns, and over and over again I have heard that the state of our roads and highways is a top issue.

While there’s no question that it’s been an exceptionally long and harsh winter and spring, the potholes and poor road conditions in Winnipeg and across the province are no accident. For seven budgets in a row, the provincial Progressive Conservative government has frozen its funding to municipalities across the province, including to the City of Winnipeg. That means that municipalities have been forced to do more with less and are trying to deal with 2022 issues with 2016 funding. With construction inflation at an all time high, it’s no wonder cities are unable to safely maintain our roads.

Before the PCs were elected, municipal funding increased every year and a focus on roads began to tackle the infrastructure deficit. In addition, I was proud to secure one-time provincial funding for priority projects, such as the upgrades on Molson Street and Panet Road. Had this government continued to invest in our roads and in our communities, road conditions would look much different today.

Likewise, spending on provincial highways also continues to fall short. The government has underspent its highways budget every single year since it was elected, leaving many in very poor condition. These highways become dangerous, as potholes force people to swerve, increasing their chances of an accident. Since coming into office, the PCs have left $166 millionfor highways unspent, and this year’s budget once again follows the same pattern. This has become a severe safety issue.

On top of all these concerns, this year’s spring flooding has further damaged our provincial infrastructure. Severe overland flooding and the need to upgrade provincial mitigation projects mean that the effects of this year’s floods will be felt for a long time. The provincial government needs to prioritize these damaged areas to restore access to communities and restart trade.

It is time for Heather Stefanson and the PCs to step up and invest in our roads because after all, it’s an investment in your safety. As always, my office can be reached at 204-654-1857 or matt.wiebe@yourmanitoba.ca

Matt Wiebe

Matt Wiebe
Concordia constituency report

Matt Wiebe is the NDP MLA for Concordia.

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