The Ontario government is providing up to $1.05 billion in funding to build or fix projects in long-term care, education, and municipalities.
According to the province in a news release, combined federal-provincial funding will be placed through the new COVID-19 Resilience infrastructure stream, which covers the building or renovating of health and safety-related projects.
The eligible projects will fall under four main categories: community, recreation, health, and education renovations; COVID-19 response infrastructure, which covers heating, ventilation, or air-conditioning; active transportation (e.g., parks, trails); and disaster mitigation, adaptation, or remediation.
“Getting shovels in the ground on new infrastructure projects across the province will be a critical component of our path to long-term economic recovery,” said Premier Ford.
“Not only will this investment help communities build the necessary infrastructure to keep Ontarians safe and healthy, but these projects will create hundreds of local construction jobs and support local businesses and suppliers. It’s a win-win for the home team.”
Up to $700 million will go towards education-related projects, which would be nominated and administered by the Ministry of Education, according to the release.
Municipalities will receive $250 million through an allocation-based program in order to “address critical local infrastructure needs, including $6.5 million that will be directed toward Indigenous and on-reserve education, through the Ministry of Infrastructure in collaboration with the Ministries of Education and Indigenous Affairs.”
As for long-term care projects, $100 million will be identified and administered by the Ministry of Long-Term Care.
This funding is part of the Canadian government’s Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program, which “reinforces the commitment of both the federal and provincial governments to protect the health and well-being of individuals and families during the pandemic,” per the release.
“Ontario recognizes the flexibility the new COVID-19 Resilience stream will provide to communities and organizations,” said Infrastructure Minister Laurie Scott.
“We’re making it possible for communities to get shovel-ready projects underway sooner so they can kick-start their local economies.”
Projects that are eligible must start by September 30, 2021 and be completed by December 31, 2021.