UPDATE: See a review of the 2020 Alberta budget and what it says about regional planning.
Here is what the budget documents say about regional planning and the mandates for Alberta Environment and Parks and Municipal Affairs.
Alberta Environment and Parks
The 2019 budget includes mandates and business plans for all provincial government ministries, including Alberta Environment and Parks. A key outcome of Alberta Environment and Park is identified as achieving environment and ecosystem health and integrity. The top objective to meet this outcome is:
“Collaborative and integrated regional and sub-regional land use planning and implementation effectively balances environmental, economic and social concerns.”
This objective is supported with funding of nearly $21 million: “In 2019-20, $20.9 million is allocated to regional and sub-regional land-use planning. The ministry is committed to returning to a comprehensive, collaborative and integrative approach in regional and sub-regional planning to manage cumulative effects and achieve desired economic, societal and environmental goals for a region, including the advancement of caribou management and recovery plans and implementation.”
Land use planning is also included in the goal of achieving public well-being through educational and recreational activities in Alberta’s natural areas.
“Local and issue-based land use planning ensures all Albertans can enjoy and appreciate parks and public lands, including through creation of the capital region Big Island Provincial Park and development of a public lands backcountry outdoor recreation, education and management plan.”
The first outcome identified is: “Albertans live in viable municipalities and communities with fiscally responsible, collaborative, and accountable local governments.”
The first key objective is: “Work with municipalities to strengthen regional planning and service delivery through a number of regional governance mechanisms, such as intermunicipal collaboration frameworks and growth management boards.”
Support for this objective is through $670.8 million for the Municipal Sustainability Initiative for local infrastructure and $16.5 million for the Alberta Community Partnership to assist with regional collaboration.