• News
  • January 10, 2018

Ontario Boosting Transit Funding for Thunder Bay

Support Will Help Enhance and Expand Transit System, Reduce Congestion





                    January 10, 2018


Ontario is providing more support to Thunder Bay, to help them enhance and expand their transit system, reduce congestion, and shorten commute times.

Bill Mauro, MPP for Thunder Bay – Atikokan, and Michael Gravelle, MPP for Thunder Bay – Superior North, announced that, as part of this year’s gas tax funding, Thunder Bay is receiving more than $2,000,000 to support upgrades and enhancements that could include major transit infrastructure projects, buying more buses, adding new routes, extending hours of service, or improving accessibility.

More public transit makes it easier for people to travel to and from work, school and appointments, reduces congestion and lowers air pollution. One bus takes up to 40 vehicles off the road, and keeps 25 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions out of the atmosphere each year.

Creating more transit options for commuters and families is part of Ontario’s plan to create fairness and opportunity during this period of rapid economic change. The plan includes a higher minimum wage and better working conditions, free tuition for hundreds of thousands of students, easier access to affordable child care, and free prescription drugs for everyone under 25 through the biggest expansion of medicare in a generation.



“This year’s increase in funding of $22.7 million is great news for Ontario municipalities — a clear indication of our government’s commitment to deliver the transformational and integrated transit system that the people of this province both expect and deserve. This increase in sustainable funding for local transit across the province means that more than 90 per cent of Ontario’s population will benefit from improvements to their daily transit service so that more people can get where they’re going faster.”

— Steven Del Duca, Minister of Transportation

“Today’s gas tax funding announcement is about improving existing transit infrastructure and adding new infrastructure like buses and extending hours of operation. For every litre of gasoline sold, Ontario currently provides two cents to municipalities to help fund local public transit improvements. Since the program began in 2004, Ontario has committed more than $3.7 billion to municipalities across the province, of that, almost $25 million has gone to Thunder Bay. The Gas Tax funding will also increase from 2 cents per litre to up to 4 cents per litre in 2021-22, raising the cities yearly funding from $2 million to $4 million.”

— MPP Bill Mauro, Thunder Bay – Atikokan                                                             

“Once again, our community is benefiting from our government’s Gas Tax Program. These annual investments are key in ensuring that our transit system can continue to improve, creating more jobs and greener methods of transportation. Not only will this funding benefit the city of Thunder Bay commuters, but will be invaluable to those who rely on public transit.”

 — MPP Michael Gravelle, Thunder Bay – Superior North

“Transit plays a critical role in the vitality of our City and contributes to quality of life for our citizens, as well as visitors. We are thrilled with the Province’s ongoing investment in the Gas Tax Program. This important partnership helps us provide residents with an efficient mobility system and travel options that allow people to fully participate in our community in a more complete way.”

— Keith Hobbs, Mayor of Thunder Bay


Ontario’s gas tax program provides municipalities with two cents per litre of provincial gas tax revenues. The province made funding for the program permanent in 2013 to provide a stable source of funding for municipalities.

In 2017, the province committed to increase funding to 2.5 cents per litre in 2019–20, 3 cents in 2020–21 and 4 cents in 2021–22. This is not an increase in the price paid at the pump by drivers.

This year the province committed $357.2 million in gas tax funding to 105 municipalities, providing service to 142 communities, the most since the program began in 2004. The funding is expected to increase to about $401.3 million in 2019–20, $481.5 million in 2020–21 and $642 million in 2021–22.

Six new municipalities were added to the program this year including: the Township of Atikokan, the County of Brant, the Township of Clearview, the Town of Innisfil, the Town of Pelham, and the Town of Tillsonburg.

Research shows that every $100 million of public infrastructure investment in Ontario boosts GDP by $114 million, particularly in the construction and manufacturing sectors.

Ontario is making the largest infrastructure investment in hospitals, schools, public transit, roads and bridges in the province's history. To learn more about what's happening in your community, go to




Enhanced Gas Tax Program


Gas Tax Funding for Municipalities

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