The 2019 Election and Water
The Water Haller – October 2019
The 2019 Election and Water
Well that was certainly an interesting election…from a blood sport aspect…but maybe not that interesting from a policy discussion standpoint. The Climate Crisis was certainly the highest ranking issue, but never got too specific. There was some discussion of First Nations and the need to continue efforts to eliminate boil water orders. Then there was a very brief moment with some suggestions for banning any sewage dumping – we were called for comment, but the interview never ran as it had disappeared as an issue by the next day.
As a more technical and science-based advocate association, CWWA doesn’t get too involved in the politics side, preferring to support our partners at the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) in that role. The FCM put out a series of positions on all matters affecting municipalities, including infrastructure funding.
So the results are in, and we’ll continue to work with a Liberal Government, at least for now. It will be very interesting to see how government strategy will change in a minority government and to see the influence of the NDP and Greens, or even the influence of the Conservatives and Bloc. Issues connected to the climate crisis will certainly get a lot of attention, as will a focus on innovation as the government seeks to balance the environment and the economy.
I expect we will see Catherine McKenna continue as Minister of the Environment, but we’ll have to wait to see who is named Parliamentary Secretary for the Environment (the one we usually deal with more directly). I see that the last Parliamentary Secretary, Sean Fraser, is back, as is Fisheries Minister, Jonathan Wilkinson. Both know our industry and issues well. I am most pleased to see our longtime CWWA friend and water champion Francis Scarpaleggia re-elected. He served as Liberal Caucus Chair most recently and will hopefully be recognized for his efforts on environmental issues.
I will send out a “Thank you and best wishes” to two ministers who will not be returning – Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale and Infrastructure & Communities Minister Amarjeet Sohi. Mr. Sohi met with us a number of times during the development of the National Infrastructure Plan that included $20 billion for green infrastructure & water. Under Mr. Goodale’s leadership at Public Safety Canada, CWWA was engaged to conduct industry surveys toward the development of national security policies and initiated the National Flood Risk Round Table leading to two very active working groups (mapping and finance/insurance). Hopefully work on all these fronts will continue with a new minister.
NWWC 2019 Banff – It’s not too late!
There is still room for you at THE national water & wastewater conference. See you all there!!!
See you all in Banff!!