Eligibility and Funding Allocations
All municipalities in Alberta (i.e., city, town, village, summer village, specialized municipality, municipal district, improvement district, special area), Metis settlements and the Townsite of Redwood Meadows Administration Society are eligible for funding under the MSI based on the terms set out in their long-term funding agreement.
Municipalities determine projects and activities to be funded based on local priorities within the general criteria set out in the program guidelines and are encouraged to take a long-term approach to planning for capital projects. Municipalities may choose to contribute funds to other municipalities, regional services commissions, or non-profit organizations for use towards eligible MSI projects.
Eligible capital projects include municipal roads, bridges, public transit vehicles/facilities, emergency services facilities/equipment, water and wastewater systems, solid waste management facilities/equipment, regional and community airport facilities/equipment, and other municipal buildings such as recreation and sports facilities, libraries, public works buildings, and cultural and community centres.
Eligible operating projects include capacity building activities that improve efficiency or effectiveness, municipal services, planning activities, and assistance to non-profit organizations. Repairs and maintenance of administration buildings, rehabilitation of capital assets, and a wider variety of small capital projects are also eligible. Refer to the 2015 capital and operating guidelines for a detailed list of eligible projects, now available on the Program Resources page.
MSI funding is allocated annually and paid to municipalities following legislative approval of the provincial budget; submission of sufficient project applications; and submission and/or certification of Statement of Funding and Expenditures.
For 2016-17, almost $1.24 billion is estimated. Of this total, $30 million is to be applied to operating priorities. The remainder is to be applied to qualifying capital projects. The capital funding includes $359.5 million in funding previously provided under the Basic Municipal Transportation Grant (BMTG).
The 2016 MSI allocations (available here) continue to include both the former BMTG funding and MSI funding. Allocations are calculated using the current MSI formula for the MSI funds, while the amounts of the former BMTG are calculated using the current BMTG formula. Use of all funding follows the terms and conditions that will be outlined in the 2016 MSI capital and operating administrative guidelines.
- MSI funding is based on municipal populations, education property tax requisitions and kilometres of local roads and includes base funding for all municipalities and Sustainable Investment funding for municipalities with limited local assessment bases.
- BMTG funding is based on municipal status, with Calgary and Edmonton receiving funding based on litres of taxable road-use gasoline and diesel fuel sold in the province; the remaining cities and urban service areas receive funding based on a combination of population and length of primary highways. Towns, villages, summer villages, improvement districts and the Townsite of Redwood Meadows receive funding based on population; and rural municipalities and Metis settlements receive funding based on a formula that takes into account kilometres of open road, population, equalized assessment, and terrain.
MSI funding allocations can only be confirmed for the current program year as updated municipal population, education tax requisition, and local road length information are required to calculate future annual funding allocations. 2016 MSI program funding is subject to the Alberta Legislature approval of the Government of Alberta Budget 2016. The 2016 funding and individual allocations are also subject to the Minister's authorization in accordance with the expressed guidelines of the program.
Unspent operating funds may be carried into the next calendar year if a municipality is unable to complete a project, but must be expended on an eligible MSI operating project by December 31 of the second year. Unspent capital funds may be carried forward a total of six years but must be expended (on an accepted project) by December 31 of the sixth year.