Liberal Party of Canada response to Question 8

Question:  Calgary has relied heavily on the Federal Disaster Assistance Initiative to repair and rebuild needed infrastructure after the flood; however, in February 2015, the Federal Government changed the funding formula. What is your position on the changes to the Disaster Assistance Initiative formula?

Question:  Will your party help fund large and small flood mitigation projects in and around Calgary?

Question:  How will your party improve rail safety in Canada?

Answer:  As part of an historic investment in infrastructure, a Liberal government will provide funding for flood mitigation in Calgary. This funding is part of the Liberal Party of Canada’s commitment to nearly double federal infrastructure investment to $125 billion – from the current $65 billion – over the next decade.

A Liberal government will provide municipalities with the reliable, stable, substantive funding they need. We will boost investment in green infrastructure by nearly $6 billion over the next four years, and almost $20 billion over ten years. This money will work with the provinces and territories to develop a coordinated action plan that allows us to better prepare for—and respond to—weather-related emergencies. We will also deliver reliable, substantive, and predictable funding, in the form of significant investment over the next ten years, for infrastructure projects to supplement strained municipal finances so that they can afford to invest in capital projects, such as those that protect communities from natural disasters.

There is no question that it is the government’s responsibility to protect the safety of Canadians who travel on the rails, live near railway tracks and those who operate the railways. Unfortunately, Transport Canada’s rail safety division is understaffed, underfunded and undertrained. A Liberal government will prioritize Canadians’ public safety. We will increase government regulation and enforcement for the transportation of dangerous substances over rail and provide Transport Canada with the necessary funding and resources to hire and train an adequate number of dangerous goods and rail safety inspectors to ensure proper oversight of the rail industry. We will also ensure that risk analysis is comprehensive and performed by experts in the field. Further, we will ensure train speed limits are determined through rigorous, evidence based methods, are closely monitored and strictly enforced. A Liberal government will also accelerate the phasing out of the older DOT-111 tank cars and base upgrade requirements on the best information available to ensure the safety of Canadians.

Moreover, a Liberal government would review the efficacy of stabilization or treatment of volatile crude at the point of departure, and review options for better use of technology for track and car inspection, maintenance and monitoring.

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