One non-profit is applauding the city for giving Winnipeg’s tree canopy a boost in the 2024 budget.
“I think the budget was very positive when it comes to Winnipeg’s urban canopy,” said Christian Cassidy, executive director of Trees Winnipeg.
Cassidy’s comments come after the City of Winnipeg unveiled its proposed budget on Wednesday.
As part of the four-year budget, Winnipeg is looking to grow the urban forestry budget by 45 per cent in order to help the city reach its pruning goals quicker. In 2026 and 2027, more of the funding will be focused to support a faster planting strategy.
“City council has been willing to put its money where its mouth is,” Cassidy said in an interview on Saturday.
“There was the $5 million increase for trees this year. The new Urban Forest Strategy – a 20-year urban forest plan – that was passed by city council. Those are both huge, significant increases even before this budget.”
With the new budget, Cassidy explained the focus for the first few years will be on maintenance, including pruning, tree removal and taking care of damaged trees.
Then in 2026 and 2027, there will be multi-million dollar increases that target tree planting.
“Could there be more money? Sure, there always could be more money, but you know it’s a really tough situation that the city’s been in this year in terms of revenues,” he said.
“There’s a lot of other services fighting for extra money or fighting for any money and so we’re really happy that they’ve put their money where their mouth is.”
More information about Winnipeg’s proposed budget can be found online.
– With files from CTV’s Daniel Halmarson, Devon McKendrick and Jeff Keele.
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