March 26 2024

Fredericton, NB Municipal leaders from across New Brunswick met last week to address the pressing challenges facing their communities, particularly the struggle to maintain fiscal health, as the Union of Municipalities of New Brunswick held their Advocacy Days 2024. 

“Municipalities are grappling with financial issues due to insufficient grants and the lack of revenue sharing with the province. Unless significant reform happens now, underfunded municipalities may be compelled to make tough decisions, such as scaling back services or increasing property taxes,” stated Andrew Black, President of the Union of Municipalities of New Brunswick (UMNB) and Mayor of Tantramar.

Mayors and councillors advocated their concerns to leaders of all major political parties. They stressed the important role municipalities play in enhancing the province’s success and residents’ well-being. “Municipalities, being the closest government level to people, provide essential services that significantly impact their daily lives”, says Black.

Municipalities were encouraged by Local Government Minister Glen Savoie’s reaffirmation of the province’s commitment to developing a new fiscal plan for municipalities by the year’s end. While this announcement was welcomed, members of the UMNB emphasized the importance of being meaningfully consulted and engaged in the process to ensure that a new fiscal framework aligns with the needs and challenges faced by municipalities across the province.

“The escalating challenges of rising costs and affordability confronting municipalities demand immediate attention and sustainable solutions to safeguard their well-being,” indicated Black. “Municipalities cannot sustain the status quo. It was evident from our discussions that we are all struggling.”

Municipalities heard from Professor Craig Brett, who presented findings related to diminishing fiscal capacity, affordability at the municipal level, and what new revenue levers might mean for local governments.

Municipal officials also met with representatives from the Saskatchewan Urban Municipalities Association (SUMA) and the Union des municipalités du Québec (UMQ), who were present at the conference to discuss their successful efforts in implementing new revenue sharing agreements in their respective provinces.

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About the UMNB:

UMNB is a bilingual association of 56 municipalities of all sizes and linguistic backgrounds. Together, our members represent almost 80% of the NB population.


Media Contact:


Vanessa Pettersson   

506 – 444 – 2285