Association of Yukon Communities president and Whitehorse city councillor Ted Laking has added another role to his resume after being confirmed as the chair of the northern and remote forum for the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM).
FCM represents municipalities across the country with the northern and remote forum being one of a number of forums and committees under the national organization. The northern and remote forum is made up of municipal representatives from across the country focused on advocating for the territories and provincial northern regions.
Among some of the other committees and forums are the network of francophone municipalities, the rural forum, and the standing committee on municipal infrastructure and transportation policy.
Laking was confirmed to his new role at FCM board meetings held the week of Sept. 12 to 16 in Strathcona County, Alberta.
“We had a very good discussion on northern and remote infrastructure priorities and the need to address the infrastructure deficit in the North with additional investments through mechanisms such as the Canada Community-Building Fund,” Laking said in a statement. “A challenge we heard loud and clear is the need to make sure federal programs are designed in a way that they do not leave our remote and rural communities behind and the need to ensure there is easy access to this funding.”
The discussion at the forum also included updates from FCM staff about advocacy efforts on housing and the federal budget. Challenges facing the housing market in the territories was also a focus for the forum.
“From the challenges associated with getting land to market, rising insurance costs, or a lack of financing for affordable or rental housing, we got a better understanding of the issues facing our communities across the North,” added Laking. “There is an opportunity for the federal government to step in and help deal with a number of these larger systemic issues.”
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