The minister of finance is holding virtual events to engage with the public
By Diego Flammini
Manitoba’s government is asking citizens to participate in the provincial budget process.
Finance Minister Scott Fielding will be hosting virtual meetings and telephone town halls with different segments of the population throughout the month to find out what Manitobans want to see in the upcoming provincial budget.
Citizens can also fill out a survey or submit comments online.
“It’s a great opportunity to listen to people and really get a sense of what priorities Manitobans have,” Fielding said, Discover Westman reported. “At the end of the day, we are asking a number of people where these important investments should be made, as well as supports for things like the pandemic, and supports of health and education, and the social services.”
Rural Manitoba is included in the town halls and virtual meetings schedule.
For those rural Manitobans who want to participate in the budget process, a telephone town hall is scheduled for Feb. 3 at 6:00 p.m. local time.
Anyone interested must register for the town hall before noon on Feb. 3.
A virtual meeting with rural Manitobans already took place.
Some groups representing rural communities didn’t attend the meeting but still plan to be part of the budget process.
“The Association of Manitoba Municipalities (AMM) did not participate in the Jan. 27 event as we will be meeting one-on-one with the minister in the near future to discuss municipal priorities for Budget 2021,” Nick Krawetz, director of policy and communications for AMM, told Farms.com in an emailed statement.
AMM did submit an information package to Minister Fielding about what priorities it has in the upcoming budget.
For rural Manitoba, the document includes recommendations to increase the amount of operating grants for rural and unpaved airports, increase support to police services to address high rates of rural crime and rescind the $5,000 cap on the Farmland School Tax Rebate.
Minister Fielding hasn’t yet announced when he will table the budget.
Farms.com has contacted members of Manitoba’s ag sector for comment on what industry items or supports should be included in the provincial budget.