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MHCA seeks provincial payments for quarry rehab projects completed

 

Executive Committee meeting February 26 2019

The MHCA will ask the provincial government to remit 85% of what is owed from a trust fund to contractors who have completed quarry rehabilitation projects, while a review of the Quarry Rehabilitation Fund continues.

“We recognize that the Mines Branch must complete its review, but these contractors have been waiting months for payments due to them for the work that was approved by the Mines Branch,” MHCA President Chris Lorenc told the MHCA Executive Committee Wednesday, at the committee monthly meeting.

“In light of the continuing review, we will ask that 85% of the payment owed be made now and the remainder following the completion of the review with interest on the remainder of the amount due.”

The MHCA was informed last summer of the review of the trust fund that finances the rehabilitation of spent pits and quarries — projects that are approved, and then paid for, by the Mines Branch.

The Mines Branch initially delayed payment to contractors, noting it needed to confirm a departmental official had authority to sign off; the minister of Growth, Enterprise and Trade can delegate that authority to a departmental official. However, subsequently, the Mines Branch noted that a review of the fund itself is also delaying any movement on such a delegation.

“As a result, we are asking the Minister to authorize payment,” Lorenc said. “Some of these contractors have significant payments delayed to them.”

The issue was among the top items discussed at the Executive Committee meeting Wednesday.

Other items included:

  • The MHCA will continue to press the provincial government for meaningful discussion about the highways capital and core infrastructure programs.
  • The MHCA is seeking confirmation that the federal funding to flow from the New Building Canada Fund in the next 5 years for identified, cost-shared infrastructure projects will augment, not replace, provincial dollars in the highways capital budget
  • A pending review of provincial procurement policies is not expected to affect heavy construction/public infrastructure procurement
  • A revamp of the WORKSAFELY website will also include a ‘job bank’ section, posting the CVs of individuals who have gone through WORKFORCE training, and jobs available within the industry
  • The three levels of government will be presenting 2019 budgets in March, the dates are:
    • Friday, March 1, City of Winnipeg
    • Thursday, March 7, Government of Manitoba
    • Tuesday, March 19, Government of Canada

The MHCA will distribute a synopsis of each to members immediately after budgets are made public, with details on the year’s infrastructure investment programs


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