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B.C. needs to protect infrastructure investments

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Failing to invest in infrastructure today means higher costs, slower growth tomorrow for British Columbians.

The Independent Contractors and Businesses Association of B.C. today released its study on the impact of infrastructure spending – and the risk of cutting it during tough budget cycles.

“With a provincial budget due on Feb. 19 there are some valuable reminders in the report about just how much more gets built when the government invests in infrastructure,” said ICBA President Philip Hochstein. “Infrastructure investments create direct and indirect jobs, drive economic benefits in the community, and enhance the quality of life.”

ICBA’s Construction Monitor – Infrastructure: Build now, save later – highlights how a dollar of infrastructure investment multiplies into three dollars’ worth of economic benefits – and how those benefits are spread across a wide range of industries – like manufacturing, financial services, and wholesale and retail trade.

The report also highlights the risk of chasing short-term budget savings by failing to invest. When it comes to roads, taxpayers can expect costs to be 62 per cent higher if governments wait to rebuild roads, instead of investing in regular maintenance and renewal.

“The impacts of infrastructure investment are felt in every corner of the economy, and help drive jobs in every part of our province,” Hochstein added. “Failure to invest today will mean even higher costs for taxpayers tomorrow – and that just doesn’t make economic sense.”

ICBA’s Construction Monitor – Infrastructure: Build now, save later – is available here.

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