Province Gives $38.5 Million Boost to Public Transit in City of Ottawa
Ontario tops up Gas Tax funding to make up for reduced gas sales during COVID-19
The Ontario government is providing $38,490,012 to support the expansion and improvement of public transit services in the City of Ottawa. The funding is part of the province’s Gas Tax program which will allocate $375.6 million this year to 107 municipalities that deliver public transit.
“Our government is providing this dedicated funding to support municipalities in improving their transit systems by upgrading transit infrastructure, adding more routes or extending services,” explained Merrilee Fullerton, MPP for Kanata-Carleton. “I will continue to consult and work with local city councillors to improve on the public transit services extended to the residents of Kanata and West Carleton.”
“The transit system is an integral part of keeping Carleton connected,” said Goldie Ghamari, MPP for Carleton. “This funding top up is important for rural communities in my riding that can benefit from added routes and services.”
“As a growing city with rapid growth this investment is critical to building Ottawa and keeping us moving,” said Lisa MacLeod, MPP for Nepean. “I look forward to these vital supports for transit in Nepean to best serve my constituents and all Ottawa residents.”
“Many residents in Ottawa West—Nepean rely on our transit system to get to work and school,” said Jeremy Roberts, MPP for Ottawa West—Nepean. “This investment through the gas tax fund will help support OC Transpo’s operations and I’m pleased that our Government has topped up this year’s amount to support Ottawa through these challenging times.”
Funding for the Gas Tax program is determined by the number of litres of gasoline sold in the province during the previous year. Municipalities that support public transit services in their community receive two cents per litre of provincial Gas Tax revenue, which can be used to extend service hours, buy transit vehicles, add routes, improve accessibility or upgrade infrastructure.
To make up for reduced gas sales due to COVID-19, this year’s Gas Tax funding includes one-time additional funding of $120.4 million to ensure municipalities can support their transit systems.
“Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, we have seen how critical public transit is for frontline workers and for Ontarians who depend on these services to get to medical appointments, the grocery store and other important locations,” said Caroline Mulroney, Minister of Transportation. “Gas Tax funding remains a vital source of long-term transit funding that municipalities can rely on to help operate and expand existing public transit services – ensuring people have access to safe and reliable transportation when they need it.”
- The 107 municipalities receiving funding through the Gas Tax program deliver public transit service to 142 communities representing more than 92 per cent of Ontario’s total population.
- The provincial and federal governments are providing up to $2.15 billion to support municipal transit systems across the province in response to COVID-19 through the Safe Restart Agreement.
- Ontario is developing regional plans that will help build a better transportation system across the province. The province has released draft regional transportation plans for Northern Ontario and southwestern Ontario, and planning is underway for the Greater Golden Horseshoe and eastern Ontario.