Briefing: Newfoundland and Labrador's 2016 Speech from the Throne
Speaking at the opening of the First Session of the Forty-Eighth General Assembly of the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador, the Honourable Frank F. Fagan, Lieutenant Governor, delivered the Speech from the Throne titled "Creating the Foundation for a Stronger Tomorrow." The speech centered on issues relating directly to Newfoundland's broader public sector. In particular, the Lieutenant Governor made important reference to improvements in infrastructure, procurement processes, and municipal engagement.
The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador promised to explore all possible avenues on how to utilize the promised infrastructure funding from the federal government. In order to best guide future investments in infrastructure, the government plans to incorporate asset management approaches, including life-cycle cost considerations, towards a Multi-Year Transportation Infrastructure Plan. Currently under development, this Plan will outline major infrastructure projects and inform strategic investments.
As part of the multi-year infrastructure planning approach, the province will look to continue its commitment to early tendering in order to expedite the issuing of tenders and therefore take advantage of a short construction season.
The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador is in the process of replacing the Public Tender Act. The new legislation will aim to improve the process by which communities acquire products and services as well as reduce red-tape impediments for both suppliers and purchasing bodies.
In order to foster economic development, the government will look to improve upon the capabilities by which municipalities are able to purchase, as well as lease, Crown Lands.
To improve the communication between municipalities and the provincial government, an annual Premier's Forum will be introduced in fall 2016, providing a line of communication for community leaders to discuss and engage directly with the Premier and the Minister of Municipal Affairs.
In further collaboration with the municipal sector, the government pledges to consult with the Municipal Assessment Agency and Municipalities Newfoundland and Labrador on a review of the Assessment Act, 2006.
The Lieutenant Governor's complete Speech from the Throne can be found here.