Nova Scotians in all areas of the province will benefit from projects that will have a lasting impact over the next ten years.
More than $120 million in one-time funding, generated from offshore revenues, will help expand and improve high-speed internet service to homes and businesses. An additional $40 million will fund projects that drive research and innovation, including money for post-secondary research in oceans, clean energy, health and other key sectors.
Investments will also be made in sport, recreation and events that contribute to our communities. More than $16 million will help support Nova Scotians who need specific supports, including funding for job coaching for people with autism spectrum disorder, needle exchange programs and assistance for low-income Nova Scotians to make their homes more energy efficient.
“We are laying the foundation for a brighter future and a stronger economy that more Nova Scotians can participate in,” said Premier Stephen McNeil. “We are making the most of this opportunity to give Nova Scotians the tools they need to succeed, make the most of the ideas that come from our brightest minds and help Nova Scotians in need.”
In total, the province will invest more than $180 million in new projects by the end of 2017-18.
“These are opportunities we may not have been able to support without this one-time revenue, and without already having a solid fiscal plan that is working,” said Finance and Treasury Board Minister and Deputy Premier Karen Casey. “Even with these investments, we expect to end 2017-18 with a balanced budget.”
Following are the investments made possible by offshore revenue.
High-speed internet: $120 million to connect more homes and businesses, and enhance service for under-served communities.
International Air Service Investment: $11.1 million to improve connections to key markets in Asia, Europe and the northeastern and central United States and help continue to increase trade, tourism and immigration.
Homewarming: $12.2 million to help low-income Nova Scotians in non-electrically heated homes with energy assessments and free home upgrades.
Opioid Use and Overdose Framework: $1.6 million to stabilize needle distribution and exchange programs delivered throughout Nova Scotia and to ensure police and corrections continue to carry naloxone.
Employment coaching for people with autism spectrum disorder: $1.4 million to help Nova Scotians with the disorder better move into the workforce and stay employed.
Shelter Nova Scotia: $1.2 million to help the organization hire more staff, replace mattresses and provide breakfast to Nova Scotians in need.
Workplace health and safety for health-care workers: $520,000 to fund training to help staff in home care and long-term care facilities to safely lift and move patients.
Research Nova Scotia Trust: $20 million to fund post-secondary research related to oceans and oceans technologies, life sciences, health and wellness, ICT, clean technologies, social innovation and resource sectors.
Offshore Growth Strategy: $11.8 million to extend offshore work in petroleum geoscience for another four years.
Saint Mary’s University Entrepreneurship, Discovery and Innovation Hub: $11 million to create a physical location that will advance creativity, innovation and commercialization and connect students and faculty with entrepreneurs, businesses and the external community.
DeepSense: $5 million to help support the creation of a world-class ocean data analytics platform to help grow the regional ocean economy.
Innovation team: $1.5 million to support a new round of projects that help post-secondary institutions grow the provincial economy, attract students and expand research and development opportunities.
Sandboxes: $850,000 to create a ninth sandbox for southwest Nova Scotia, to bring together Nova Scotia Community College and Université Sainte-Anne students, mentors and external advisors in spaces where students can explore entrepreneurship and take business and social enterprise concepts from ideas to execution.
Rugby Nova Scotia: $200,000 to support the international rugby series hosted by Rugby Nova Scotia between June and August.
Atlantic Division- Canoe/Kayak Canada – Pan Am Games: $320,000 to support hosting the 2018 Pan American Canoe Sprint Championships in September. Communities, Culture and Heritage will provide an additional $200,000 for a total of $520,000.
Sherbrooke Restoration Commission: $246,000 to support the transition of the Sherbrooke pension plan to the Public Service Superannuation Plan.
Several projects remain under negotiation. They will be announced in the coming weeks as agreements are completed.
For more information, visit http://www.novascotia.ca/finance .