Minister of Infrastructure and Communities Amarjeet Sohi responds to a question during question period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Wednesday, May 31, 2017. A new agreement between Ottawa and B.C. will see the federal government spend $4.1 billion on infrastructure in the province over the next decade. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld

Liberals set hiring, procurement rules for federally-funded projects

Indigenous Peoples, recent immigrants, veterans, young people, people with disabilities and women to be hired

Cities, provinces and territories building new roads, bridges, water and transit systems funded with federal dollars will have to let Indigenous Peoples, veterans and recent immigrants have a hand in those projects under new rules being unveiled today.

The idea of so-called community benefits will be a mandatory requirement for many infrastructure projects the federal government will help pay for through its $33-billion spending envelope.

Provinces and territories will have some leeway to decide what projects are to be subject to the rules. Those projects that are will have to explain publicly how far they have come in meeting the government’s goals.

RELATED: Liberals’ 2-year infrastructure plan set to take 5: documents

Under the new guidelines, provinces, territories and cities would have to hire apprentices, Indigenous Peoples, recent immigrants, veterans, young people, people with disabilities and women, or procure goods and services from small- and medium-sized businesses or social enterprises.

Infrastructure Minister Amarjeet Sohi will be in Toronto to unveil the new rules alongside the MP that first brought the idea to him two years ago — Immigration Minister Ahmed Hussen.

Community benefit agreements have been used for years in the United States and were applied to the construction of the athletes’ village for the Vancouver Olympics. The agreements require projects to hire locally or create jobs for groups facing high unemployment rates, such as young people and Aboriginals.

The deals are usually negotiated among private companies doing work, the public body funding the project and community groups like unions, faith-based groups or social services.

The Liberals inserted broad wording about community benefit requirements into infrastructure funding deals that provinces and territories signed over the past year.

RELATED: B.C., Ottawa sign $4.1-billion transportation and infrastructure deal

Once construction starts on projects funded through those agreements, the Liberals want to see how many hours the targeted populations work, or the value of the contracts provided to targeted businesses, to see how well proponents are doing at meeting their goals.

There will also be requirements to explain the challenges and successes provinces, territories and cities have in meeting the community benefit goals.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Portion of Armstrong road closed after explosive discovered

An ordnance believed to be a grenade found on Smith Drive between Dairy Queen and Anchor Inn Pub

Okanagan-Shuswap weather: the warm sun is sticking around

Environement Canada forcasts sun, no clouds for Wednesday

Trailer Park Boy brings Cheeseburger Tour to Vernon

Randy performs at Vernon’s Status Nightclub Friday

Slow start for LGBTQ safe place program: Vernon coordinator

The Safe Place program offers the LGBTQ2S+ community shelter if they are feeling unsafe.

Cougar sightings on the rise in Vernon

More reports of seeing large wild cats over last year

The UBC Innovation Library has helped over 1,100 students since opening in 2015

Students across B.C. can access their academic resources at the UBC Innovation Library

Facebook to overhaul ad targeting to prevent discrimination

The company is also paying about $5 million to cover plaintiffs’ legal fees and other costs

B.C. mosque part of open-house effort launched in wake of New Zealand shootings

The ‘Visit a Mosque’ campaign aims to combat Islamophobia

SilverStar pairs Culture & Cocktails for Seismic event

Fundraiser supports Arts Council of the North Okanagan

‘That’s a load of crap’: Dog poop conspiracy spreads in White Rock

Allegation picked up steam through a Facebook page run by a city councillor

Explosives unit brought in after suspicious boxes left at B.C. RCMP detachment

Nanaimo RCMP issues all clear after packages were found on lawn earlier in the day

Avalanche control tomorrow on Highway 1

Expect closures of up to two hours east of Revelstoke

TKI Construction looks forward to being part of Rutland

The company is renovating the old AG Outdoor Superstore

2019 BUDGET: As deficit grows, feds spend on job retraining, home incentives

Stronger economy last year delivered unexpected revenue bump of an extra $27.8 billion over six years

Most Read