Alberta Budget 2015: Calgary transit funding
No Green Line funding announced
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The province’s expected contribution of $1.5 billion for Calgary’s Green Line transit project was suspiciously absent from Tuesday’s budget.
Councillor Shane Keating said he’s not surprised the money isn’t there, and he’s hopeful it will be in the spring budget.
“I think it has to be in the March 2016 budget. That’s where we’ve worked at when we’ve talked to most of the MLAs and ministers. We’ve said we have to get this done – it’s in the best interest of Calgary.”
Finance minister Joe Ceci said the government has $4.4 billion in currently unallocated capital money that could be diverted to transit. Keating suspects the money for the Green Line is there if the city can make the case for it.
He noted that Calgary is about one third of the province’s population, and one third of that unallocated capital money would just cover the province’s expected contribution for the Green Line.
Jeff Binks, president of LRT on the Green, said his group is also disappointed but cautiously optimistic.
He too is holding out hope for a share of the $4.4 billion.
"As far as we’re concerned, when you look at projects for the cities of Calgary, no other project qualifies for that money,” said Binks. “We’re going to double down our efforts to make the government aware and hopefully Calgarians will join us.”