11 May 2009

No deal. No cash.

The lack of a deal with the federal government is holding up approval of projects eligible for the federal government’s economic stimulus spending.

The provinces of Alberta, Saskatchewan, Newfoundland and Labrador, Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick and Manitoba, as well as the three territories, have yet to reach agreements with Ottawa on the program, although some contacted last week said agreements were imminent.

However, one official told The Globe and Mail that the deal with Alberta was delayed because the government in that province wants some of the previous money it allocated to infrastructure spending to count toward its one-third share of the program. Alberta feels it has spent substantially more on infrastructure than any other province and that their actions should be recognized. A federal official said Friday that the two governments have since reached an agreement in principle.

Maybe the provincial government has sorted that out in the meantime.  There’s not much else that could prompt a joint federal-provincial newser.

Lots o’ cash and cuddles update:  Turns out that there was a deal and that the federal government was quite happy to hold a giant news conference with both federal and provincial Conservatives attending.

But the cuddles didn’t stop with the newser.  Provincial Conservative public works minister Trevor Taylor even issued a ministerial statement on the cash, this being polling season and all.