News and Notes From The Legislature

News and Notes From The Legislature

WINNIPEG, MB - A new flood report indicates soil moisture levels are normal to drier than normal in most of Manitoba, Infrastructure Minister Ron Schuler recently announced.

"We have several months before the spring flood season begins, but this report provides us with an idea of moisture levels in the soil now, plus water levels in rivers and lakes as the deep freeze begins," said Schuler. "Floods are caused by a combination of unique circumstances and there is a risk of over-estimating or under-estimating the flood potential too far in advance."

The 2017 Fall Conditions Report covers three key potential flood factors: soil moisture at the time of freeze-up, base flows on rivers and water levels on lakes prior to spring run-off, and long-term forecast winter precipitation.

New report predicts strong growth in Manitoba's economy

A new report predicts more than 23,000 workers will join the labour force each year between 2017 and 2023, Growth, Enterprise and Trade Minister Blaine Pedersen and Education and Training Minister Ian Wishart announced last month.

"The findings this year support the growing sense of optimism that business owners have about our economy and its growth in the years to come," said Pedersen. "The Labour Market Occupational Forecasts report looks at a number of factors and provides projections about the future of Manitoba's economic performance that support economic development planning."

The unemployment rate is expected to continue to decline over the same time period, while the provincial economy is expected to grow an average of 1.5 per cent per year.

Nearly 54,000 new jobs are expected to be created between 2017 and 2023. The majority are expected to require at least some post-secondary education and training including university, college or a trade certification.

Province invests in improvements for internet service in the North.

The government of Manitoba is making a contribution valued at up to $20 million to provide increased broadband connection to First Nations, rural, and northern Manitoba communities, Premier Brian Pallister announced last month. This is Manitoba's contribution to a $63-million project to bring high-speed Internet to 72 rural and remote communities in the province.

"There is tremendous potential in northern Manitoba. Developing that potential is a priority of our provincial government and to do that we need the tools to maximize our opportunities," said Pallister. Manitoba Hydro will allow Clear Sky Communications, a Manitoba First Nations-owned and -operated Internet service provider, to access and utilize existing fibre-optic cable network and related assets. Once completed, the broadband project will include 10-gigabit Ethernet fibre connections that will provide 72 communities - 37 of which are First Nations and 18 are located in remote regions of northern Manitoba - and 88 institutions with access to high-speed Internet services on par with southern urban areas.

Province announces regulations for recreational vehicles and factory built homes to be updated

The Manitoba government will be modernizing the regulations for manufactured homes and recreational vehicles (RVs), Growth, Enterprise and Trade Minister Blaine Pedersen, minister responsible for the Office of the Fire Commissioner (OFC), announced in a release last month.

"The manufactured homes and RV industries have changed significantly over the past 40 years, and it is time for us to adapt as well," said Pedersen. "We heard this loud and clear in our public consultations.

Manufactured homes and RVs are both currently regulated under The Buildings and Mobile Homes Act. Changes affecting manufactured homes will include updating the definitions and referenced standards under The Building and Mobile Homes Act, and removing the permit and inspection requirements for the sale of used 'mobile homes'.

The minister noted these changes are part of an ongoing initiative to reduce red tape across government and will take effect in the spring of 2018.

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TOPICS:   Manitoba News

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