Premier Brian Pallister Reaffirms Commitment to Lake Manitoba Outlet Project
April 16, 2018
ST. LAURENT—At a community meeting here today, Premier Brian Pallister reiterated the Manitoba government’s commitment to building and completing an outlet on Lake Manitoba for the protection of the lives and livelihoods of residents of the Interlake and Lake Manitoba basin.
The premier and members of his cabinet met with community members to hear how the flooding of 2011 impacted their community, and to discuss the needs for the outlet to be built. This follows a letter sent to the prime minister of Canada, calling on the federal government to designate the outlet as an emergency construction project.
“Today, I am announcing our government is committed to getting shovels in the ground this year, beginning with construction of an access road leading to the construction site,” said Pallister. “For 60 years, inaction by government has devastated farm families, businesses and whole communities, and that inaction will end this year.”
The premier also announced the entirety of the $540-million project would be completed through an open tendering process, which includes no requirement that only companies willing to pay union dues could submit a tender. This will allow the Manitoba government to shop smarter and control every dollar for the balance of the contract, the premier said.
“Project labour agreements, like those forced onto contractors by the previous government, do not allow the government to shop smarter,” Infrastructure Minister Ron Schuler added. “We are ensuring all contractors submit bids that will build the outlet smarter and with better value in mind.”
Manitobans will have the right to have their voices heard on this project during both provincial and federal environmental reviews, both of which will happen in the near future, the minister noted.
“Our government wants to make something very clear: we will not be paying any organization or any individual not to speak on this project,” Pallister said. “The safety of Manitobans must be respected and that is why this project must proceed.”
– 30 –
For more information:
- Public information, contact Manitoba Government Inquiry: 1-866-626-4862 or 204-945-3744.
- Media requests for general information, contact Communications Services Manitoba: 204-945-3765.
- Media requests for ministerial comment, contact Communications and Stakeholder Relations: 204-945-4916.