Dec. 9, 2008
FREDERICTON (CNB) - A record $661.4 million capital investment was announced today by Finance Minister Victor Boudreau. The investment is part of a more-than-$1.2-billion commitment in capital spending planned in the next two years.
Boudreau said that projects resulting from the investment will help provide jobs, stimulate the economy during difficult economic times, and put New Brunswick on a fast track to recovery when the economy rebounds.
"These investments are strategic and part of a balanced program that government has implemented," Boudreau said. "They will allow us to move forward with our self-sufficiency agenda, and provide much-needed construction activity in highways, educational facilities and the health-care sector across the province."
Record-breaking investments are being made in post-secondary education: $160 million in the next two years, which will include over $100 million in new construction and upgrades to the New Brunswick Community College network. Edmundston will receive $35 million for a new campus, Saint John will receive $44 million for an expansion, the Moncton campus will receive $20 million for a major renovation, and the Bathurst campus will receive $3.6 million for a new multi-trades shop.
In the K-12 system, a total of $ 49.5 million will be invested in new construction and renovations in 2009-10:
Transportation-related infrastructure will see significant investment: $378.8 million in 2009-10. This represents $51.7 million more than is being spent this year. Major projects include $35 million for Route 8 Nashwaak/Marysville bypass; $21 million for the Route 1 One Mile House interchange; $13 million for the Route 7 Welsford bypass; and $16.5 million to begin construction of a replacement vessel for the Grand Manan ferry service.
In addition, the government will be delivering on another important commitment in the Charter for Change with the announcement of the twinning of the entire length of Route 1 from the United States border at St. Stephen, to Route 2 at River Glade, by 2014. This major investment, along with the future operation, maintenance and rehabilitation, will be undertaken through a public-private partnership.
Also, $268.1 million will be invested to construct and upgrade provincial roads, highways and bridges, including a major investment to begin rehabilitation of the Princess Margaret Bridge in Fredericton.
Capital investments of $67 million in the health-care system will be made in 2009-10. This represents $24 million more than this year's spending.
Funding will be provided to:
Renovations will also be made at hospitals in Fredericton, Miramichi, Saint John and Moncton to help accommodate the new English-language medical education program.
A $24-million investment will be made in improving radiation therapy technology at Saint John Regional hospital and the Dr. Georges-L. Dumont Hospital in Moncton.
Investments will include $12.4 million under the Provincial Gas Tax Transfer Top-Up Fund, which provides infrastructure improvements in municipalities and unincorporated areas across the province.
An investment of $10 million will be made under federal/provincial agreements for municipal investments in green infrastructure to provide safe drinking water and more effective waste water treatment facilities.
As committed previously, the government will invest $18.7 million in the Petitcodiac River restoration project to undertake necessary planning, remediation work and site preparation.
Government will also take action to remove the Eel River dam located outside Dalhousie, which will help address a number of environmental concerns related to the dam.
Safety and security
More than $40 million will be invested in this sector, including $21 million for new correctional facilities in southeastern New Brunswick and Dalhousie.
The province will continue the process that will see new courthouse facilities built in Moncton and Saint John through public-private partnerships.
The tourism sector will receive $4 million in infrastructure investments for improvements to such landmarks as the Village Historique Acadien, Kings Landing and Mount Carleton, as well as the network of provincial parks. There will also be $2.1 million invested to continue repairs to the Sentier NB Trail bridges.
Boudreau said that he was very pleased that the projects announced as part of the capital budget will be underway fairly quickly, and will provide jobs and other economic spin-offs in the spring.
"We are providing leadership, and today's announcement will help encourage consumer and business confidence, and generate income for spending and investing in our province," Boudreau said. "The projects announced today will not only help generate economic stimulus, they are investments that will serve New Brunswickers well for many years to come."
The capital budget may be found online.
MEDIA CONTACT: Marc Belliveau, communications, Department of Finance, 506-453-4138.