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A conversation with Vicki-May Hamm: FCM priorities for 2019 federal election

Vicki-May Hamm – mayor of the City of Magog, Quebec and the past-president of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) – sat down with Municipal World CEO Susan Gardner at the organization’s 2019 annual conference in Quebec City.

During the conference, Hamm was wrapping up her term as president (a role now filled by Regional Municipality of Halifax councillor Bill Karsten) and sat down to reflect upon FCM’s recent accomplishments, as well as priorities for the organization’s members in the months ahead as we approach the federal election.

Local Government Status to Remain Top of Mind

One accomplishment Hamm said will stick in her mind is the work FCM did to bring a municipal focus to the federal government’s 2019 budget deliberations. It is a mindset Hamm said was not only prevalent throughout the conference, but will also be top of mind for candidates in the months leading up to the federal election.

“I find it very interesting when all of the leaders say mostly what we want to hear them say. What FCM is trying to do is make sure our priorities are in their platforms,” she said. “When they are saying it in front of 2,000 delegates, maybe if it isn’t officially yet in their platforms, we will remind them that they said it.”

Municipal Priorities Share Federal Campaign Spotlight

Hearing Liberal, Conservative, NDP, and Green Party officials state a modernized relationship with municipalities is a priority was something Hamm said was good for FCM members to hear – as was recognition of the need for the money flowing down to municipalities be predictable, long-term, and for all sizes of municipalities.

Issues such as the need for reliable broadband access in rural and remote communities, along with funding for transit and infrastructure were also key, she pointed out.

Heading into the federal campaign, Hamm also said FCM will be engaging with members to ensure the local government focus is maintained by sitting MPs and candidates alike. This is important, she added, given the status local government holds in the country.

“That is one thing that came out really strong in the polling we did,” Hamm said. “Canadians across Canada, from big or small cities, they trust us more than any other order of government. We are in a really good position right now.”  MW

✯ Municipal World Insider and Executive Members: You might also be interested in the article: FCM President: municipal vision alive on national stage. Note that you can now access the complete collection of past articles (and more) from your membership dashboard.


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