After winning a seat last year to help represent B.C. on the Federation of Canadian Municipalities board, CVRD Area A director Daniel Arbour is putting his name for re-election to the national organization.
FCM is the national voice of local government in Ottawa, and is responsible to advocate for federal policies that support local government programs and investments. It also manages the $1 billion Green Municipal Fund, where dividends can be accessed by municipalities and regional districts through a competitive process.
“My first year on the board of FCM was inspiring and productive,” said Arbour. “There is a diverse group of local government leaders from all provinces and territories. A big emphasis in the past year was the post-COVID economic recovery. FCM worked hard to identify local government priorities shared across the country. Climate preparedness and disaster relief, as well as affordable housing supports, were examples of issues that rose to the top for local leaders in 2021.”
The board of FCM is comprised of 74 local government elected officials, eight of whom represent B.C. Looking ahead, Arbour believes that 2022/2023 may call for a new focus as inflation exerts pressure on families, businesses and local government. “My view is that with tough economic conditions and a growing affordability crisis, all orders of government should be frugal while not giving up on the future we want.”
For Arbour, this means continuing to shift investment into low carbon infrastructure, and support lower- and middle-class families as they face higher prices everywhere.
“The orientation of federal and provincial policies has a huge impact on the ability of local government to keep our cost of business low. I would look forward to advocate for things that help us fight inflation and the affordability crisis in a durable way. For example, supporting local government with capital investments that lower yearly operating costs could be prioritized.”
The Comox Valley Regional District board endorsed Arbour’s candidacy at the May 10 meeting. The FCM will hold its AGM and election June 5.