04/11/2007

As part of the Ontario Budget 2007, the Provincial Government committed to immediately flow through the Federal Government’s “Public Transit Capital Trust” funds of $352 million -
($277 million for transit infrastructure and $75 million for public transit capital) to transit-operating municipalities by March 31, 2007 based on transit ridership, but did not provide specific details. 

AMO now has further details from the Ontario Government regarding distribution of these additional funds.

Background: 

In June 2005, AMO signed an “Agreement in Principle” for the transfer of Federal public transit funds which indicated two years of funding. In the interim, before the funding agreement was signed between Canada and AMO on March 30, 2007, a new Federal government came into power that resulted in a slightly different policy direction.

The new funding agreement represented Year One of the “Agreement in Principle”. The 2006 Federal Budget then assumed the funding targeted for 2006-07, enriched it with two additional years of funding (2007-08; 2008-09), to establish a ridership-based “Federal Public Transit Capital Trust”. The distribution of this trust was to be paid once the Federal books closed (September 2006) subject to confirmation of a Federal surplus. In September 2006, the public accounts indeed confirmed a $13 billion Federal surplus and the trust funds were immediately disbursed to all provinces and territories based on a per capita allocation. In the case of Ontario, the disbursement was $352 million.

In the 2006 Fall Economic Statement, the Ontario Government identified revenue receipts for the $352 million Federal Government trust, but did not commit to disbursement of these revenues to municipalities pending successful resolution of negotiations with the Federal Government related to the Canada-Ontario Agreement.

In the recent Ontario Budget 2007, the Provincial Government announced a plan to unlock the $352 million of the Federal Public Transit Capital Trust to be allocated by March 31, 2007 based on transit ridership to transit operating municipalities. The funding has now been disbursed to transit operating municipalities as an unconditional grant.

Attached identifies how much each transit-providing municipality should have been paid before theend of March 2007.

Action: For information.