March 20, 2024

Fredericton, New Brunswick – Mayors from municipalities from all corners of the province are gathering this week in Fredericton as part of the UMNB’s “Advocacy Days 2024” conference. Mayors will meet to discuss the challenges municipalities are facing, including the lack of a new municipal fiscal framework. They will engage with all of the major political party leaders as well as with one another on common challenges, best practices, and on developing solutions for New Brunswickers.

Premier Blaine Higgs, Susan Holt, leader of the Official Opposition, and David Coon, leader of the Green Party of New Brunswick will all attend the conference, and mayors will have the opportunity to participate in a Q&A session with each leader. For his remarks, Premier Higgs will be joined by Glen Savoie, minister of Local Government. Representatives from the Saskatchewan Urban Municipalities Association (SUMA) and the Union des municipalités du Québec (UMQ) will also present at the conference, to discuss their successful efforts to implement municipal fiscal reform in their provinces.

“I’m thrilled that we have the opportunity to come together as representatives from our respective municipalities, so that we can speak with one voice on the issues affecting us”, said Andrew Black, president of the UMNB and mayor of Tantramar. “We have repeatedly told the province loud and clear that they must keep their promise of a new fiscal framework to be implemented by January 1st, 2025. Those calls will be renewed at Advocacy Days 2024, and I hope our provincial leaders recognize this conference as an excellent opportunity to pledge their commitment to making fiscal reform a reality.”

The conference will also allow UMNB members to review Budget 2024, to be released the day before the conference. Municipalities are on the frontlines of delivering critical services, and they are facing increasingly difficult challenges with rising costs. “The prosperity of our province is tied directly to the success of our municipalities. A collaborative effort between the province and municipalities is desperately needed to meet the evolving needs of our citizens, and a new fiscal model is required to ensure everyone can receive the services they need,” said Black.

The conference is scheduled for March 20-21, at the Crowne Plaza in Fredericton, New Brunswick. It will begin with a press conference at 9:00 AM on March 20th, where UMNB will provide an initial reaction to Budget 2024. UMNB is thrilled to be hosting this event, and looks forward to giving its members the opportunity to come together and advocate for stronger support for municipalities.


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Vanessa Pettersson