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Redefining Our Future: FCM’s Annual Conference and Trade Show Wraps in Calgary

Press Release

June 10, 2024

Calgary, AB – FCM’s Annual Conference and Trade show set a new record with the largest number of participants in the organization’s recent history. This year’s conference, themed “Redefining Our Future,” attracted over 3,100 attendees. They gathered in Calgary, AB, to actively engage with national party leaders and representatives, shape FCM’s policy priorities, and advance ambitious ideas to address the challenges and opportunities presented by Canada’s rapid growth.

This level of engagement highlights the significance of local issues and the importance of providing municipalities with the necessary tools to build, maintain, and deliver the infrastructure and services that Canadians require in their daily lives.

“I am amazed by the record-breaking turnout at this year’s annual conference, which undeniably shows our leaders’ strong dedication to engaging with and addressing the concerns of Canadians,” said Geoff Stewart, incoming FCM President and Deputy Mayor of the Municipality of the County of Colchester.

“Municipalities nationwide strive to improve the quality of life of their residents and maintain essential services. However, they struggle to fund these services due to an outdated revenue framework. FCM is advocating for a new Municipal Growth Framework to empower municipalities with more equitable revenue tools. The federal government needs to convene a meeting with all orders of government to make visionary decisions for a more sustainable future for all Canadians”, added Mayor Stewart.

Municipal leaders engaged in productive workshops, study tours, and inspiring keynotes, including speeches by federal elected officials, including Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Minister of Housing, Infrastructure and Communities of Canada Sean Fraser, Scott Aitchison, MP for the Conservative Party of Canada, Jagmeet Singh, the NDP Leader and Elizabeth May, the Green Party Leader. These discussions aimed to pave the way for a more fair, equitable and inclusive country, one that is ready to improve the quality of life of residents across the country.

FCM members make their voices heard

During Saturday’s Resolutions Plenary, FCM members also debated and voted in favour of four key resolutions:

  1. Strengthening RCMP Recruitment and Retention: FCM is urging the federal government to collaborate with relevant federal authorities to carry out strategic measures aimed at improving and increasing RCMP recruitment and retention efforts. This is to ensure that the RCMP is appropriately staffed to fulfil their direct and indirect policing duties across Canada.
  2. Federal Support for Food Banks: FCM calls on the federal government to help address the food insecurity crisis by providing emergency funding to food banks, food rescue agencies, and farmers’ markets providing emergency food assistance, and recognize the systemic issues involved in food bank usage, including affordability, inequality, core housing need and insufficient social supports, in order to end food insecurity.
  3. Enhancing Shelter Supports for Women and Survivors of Intimate Partner Violence: FCM calls on the federal government to work with the provinces and territories to provide permanent operational funding, open to local governments and community organizations, for shelters, transitional housing, and supportive housing for women and survivors of intimate partner violence, including Indigenous, 2SLGBTQIA+ people, and persons with disabilities.
  4. Harassment of Elected Local Government Officials: FCM calls on the federal government to work with provinces, territories, and local governments, through FCM, to identify and implement measures to protect elected local government  officials, their family members, and staff – especially women, members of Black and racialized communities, and 2SLGBTQIA+ individuals, persons with disabilities, and Indigenous people – from harassment, intimidation, and threats, thereby reinforcing a unified front to safeguard democracy. FCM also calls on all elected officials of all orders of government to lead by example, demonstrating civility and mutual respect for their political counterparts.

FCM releases crucial recommendations aimed at enhancing the lives of Canadians

On June 6, FCM published a report with recommendations detailing how to achieve a new, fair and predictable municipal growth framework. This plan would allow local governments to maintain and build the infrastructure residents need daily and deliver the services they depend on in their everyday lives.

In addition, FCM is calling on the federal government to commit by the next Fall Economic Statement to convene a conversation with all orders of government to work together to negotiate a new municipal growth framework.

FCM members elect new leadership

Having served on FCM’s Board of Directors since 2017, Geoff Stewart, Deputy Mayor of the Municipality of the County of Colchester, NS, was elected as FCM’s President.

Delegates also elected new members to FCM’s Board of Directors and its three vice-presidents:

  • First Vice-President: Rebecca Bligh, Councillor, City of Vancouver, BC
  • Second Vice-President: Tim Tierney, Councillor, City of Ottawa, ON
  • Third Vice-President: Kathy Valentino, Deputy Mayor, City of Thompson, MB

“I am honoured by the opportunity to serve as FCM’s President as we look to the future and the opportunities in front of us,” said Stewart. “With municipalities increasingly recognized as a foundational, nation-building order of government, we must continue to deliver local solutions to national challenges. In the coming year, I look forward to exploring with our members what new tools they need to shape tomorrow’s Canada.”

The Federation of Canadian Municipalities unites more than 2,100 local governments at the national level, representing more than 92 per cent of Canadians in every province and territory.

For more information: FCM Media Relations, (613) 907-6395, media@fcm.ca

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