Department of Infrastructure (Manitoba)

Manitoba Infrastructure (French: Infrastructure Manitoba) is the provincial government department responsible for managing infrastructure in Manitoba. It is in charge of "the development of transportation policy and legislation, and [of] the management of the province’s vast infrastructure network."[2]

Manitoba Infrastructure
Agency overview
JurisdictionManitoba
Employees1,960 FTE (2019/20)[1]
Annual budget$649.2 m CAD (2019/20)[1]
Minister responsible
Deputy Minister responsible
  • Sarah Thiele, Deputy Minister of Infrastructure
Key document
Websitegov.mb.ca/mit/index.html

Manitoba Infrastructure was initially known as Public Works, which changed to Government Services in 1968, when the province expanded the department to include the provision of common services for other governmental departments.[3] In 2016, the department name would be changed to its current one.[4]

The department operates under the oversight of the Minister of Infrastructure (Ministre de l'Infrastructure), currently Ron Schuler, who was appointed to the portfolio on 3 May 2016 by the Progressive Conservative government of Brian Pallister.[5][6]

OrganizationEdit

Traffic and Transportation Modernization Act
 
Legislative Assembly of Manitoba
Enacted by3rd Session, 41st Legislature
Effective1 March 2019
Legislative history
BillBill 14
Status: Current legislation

Manitoba Infrastructure oversees the provision of such services as property management, procurement, water bomber operations, air ambulance flights, fleet vehicles, stewardship of Crown Lands, and the security of provincial government buildings.[7]

Duties of the Department related to transportation include corporate policy, provincial legislation development, enforcement of motor carrier safety and regulation, carrier permits, and the management of sustainable transportation initiatives.[7]

Regarding water control, drainage, and management of transportation infrastructure, responsibilities of the Department include the construction, maintenance, and operation of: 19,000 kilometres (12,000 mi) of all-weather roads, 2,200 km (1,400 mi) of winter roads, and 4,700 km (2,900 mi) of drains; as well as 75 dams, 61 reservoirs, 41 pumping stations, 24 northern airports, and more than 21,000 bridges and culverts, among others.[7]

Manitoba Infrastructure regional offices[8]
Region Regional office Sub-regional office
1 – Eastern Steinbach Winnipeg (PTH 1 East)
2 – South Central Portage la Prairie Arborg
Carman
3 – South Western Brandon Boissevain
Birtle
4 - West Central Dauphin Swan River
Ashern
5 - Northern Thompson The Pas


Manitoba Infrastructure includes the following agencies and boards:[9]

  • CentrePort Canada
  • Disaster Assistance Appeal Board
  • Land Value Appraisal Commission
  • Licence Suspension Appeal Board
  • Medical Review Committee

HistoryEdit

Public Works (1871–1967)Edit

In the beginning, the Minister of Agriculture was ex officio the minister responsible for public works. The first Minister of Public Works and Agriculture was appointed by the Lieutenant Governor on 13 January 1871, as a member of Manitoba's Executive Council, established after the first elections in the newly-established province of Manitoba.[10] This new portfolio would carry out the responsibilities of the Board of Public Works and the Committee of Economy from the defunct Council of Assiniboia, as well as the responsibility of overseeing the provincial government's involvement in the development and maintenance of roads, bridges, ferries, and related services.[10][11]

In 1874, following the division of the Department of Public Works and Agriculture's functions into two separate departments—and the resignation of Edward Hay as minister[12]—the Department of Public Works was established. This new department was responsible for directing all construction, maintenance and repair for all public works of the Province of Manitoba.[11]

In its initial years, the Department was primarily concerned with the construction of provincial roads and government facilities. However, in the late 19th century, as Manitoba's population increased significantly, the Department of Public Works became increasingly important in providing services to new arrivals. As Manitoba grew into the modern era, drainage projects, bridges, and culverts also became increasingly necessary. The Department would also begin to take on other public works projects, including the drilling of wells; expanding the highways system; building government buildings/institutions and offices; and constructing schools and grain elevators.[11] Such would also eventually include the management of the Legislative Building, the Law Courts and Land Titles Buildings, the provincial prison in Headingly, the Hospitals for Mental Diseases in Brandon and Selkirk, the Manitoba School for the Deaf, and various other facilities.[11]

In 1930, the Highway Traffic Act was passed. Between the 1940s and 1950s, the Department put its primary attention towards expanding and maintaining provincial highways, as well as towards the ongoing management and maintenance of government spaces.[11] This increasing concern over highways and roads resulted in the creation of the Highways Branch. With the passage of the Public Works Act in 1943, the Highways Branch of the Department was formed, under which all functions related to the planning, design, construction and maintenance of Manitoba highways, roads, and bridges were amalgamated and transferred to.[13]

In 1959, the Bridge Office (renamed the Bridge Division) was created within the Highways Branch.[14] In 1960, the Branch received its very own designated Assistant Deputy Minister, coinciding with an increase in construction projects and traffic studies, as well as in funding and staff. In this time, the Planning and Design Division was established within the Branch in an attempt to meet the growing challenges related to planning, design and engineering presented by modern highway and bridge construction.[13]

Division into two ministries (1965–99)Edit

A new Public Works Act and Highway Traffic Act were passed in 1965, resulting in considerable changes to the Department's structure. Most notably, Public Works was divided into two separate departments: the Departments of Public Works and of Highways, though both would continue to share a single ministry.[11]

The Department of Highways was created out of Public Works' former Highways Branch as an independent department.[13] This new Department continued the role it previously had under Public Works, overseeing the construction and maintenance of Manitoba's road and highway system.[15] Also part of the 1965 Act, the functions related to the acquisition of land for use in provincial works projects were consolidated within the Land Acquisition Branch and the Land Acquisition Commission.[11]

In 1968–69, the government of Walter Weir further expanded the role of the Public Works department to provide common services needed by all departments, including the "design, construction, acquisition. and maintenance of government buildings and property; the procurement and maintenance of government vehicles and equipment; and the delivery of postal, printing and information services to the government."

To signal the change in its operation, the department was intended to be renamed the Government Services;[16][17] however, the name change would not be affirmed by the legislature, and the Department continued to operate as Public Works until 1978.[11]

At the same time, the Minister of Highways was renamed Minister of Transportation.[18][19] This name was kept by the NDP administration of Edward Schreyer, who assigned Joseph Borowski to the role in 1969, while changing the "Minister of Public Works" to the "Minister of Government Services" with the appointment of Howard Pawley.[18][19]

In 1970, the functions of the Motor Vehicle Branch, held by the Minister of Public Utilities, was transferred to the Highways minister's portfolio, which included responsibility for the facilitation of road safety and the administration of programs like driver's education.[15] Later that year, the Department of Highways was formally consolidated with Public Works to create the Department of Public Works and Highways. Nonetheless, both Public Works and Highways continued to operate as independent departments until they were officially separated and restructured in 1977/78.[15]

Highways & Transportation and Government ServicesEdit

The departmental restructuring in 1978 resulted in the Conservative government of Sterling Lyon dissolving the Departments of Highways and of Public Works departments, to be replaced by two new respective departments, both simultaneously headed by Harry Enns in 1978.[15][11][20]

The new Department of Highways and Transportation (French: Ministère de la voirie et des transports) was established as an independent department following the removal of the Highways department from the umbrella of the Public Works and Highways portfolio.[15][21] This new department took responsibility over the construction and maintenance of the road and highway system of Manitoba, as well as over the Motor Vehicle Branch (later known as the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Division), which looked over highway safety and regulation.[21]

Highways and Transportation also adopted the operation of Transportation Services from the Department of Northern Affairs and Transportation Services, which would add transportation-related functions under its purview. This included responsibility over Manitoba's freight and passenger road, rail, and air transportation, as well as over the conducting of highway- and transportation-related land surveys. The latter responsibility, however, would be transferred to the Department of Natural Resources in 1994.[21]

On the other side, the newly-formed Department of Government Services absorbed the functions of the former Public Works department. This new department was in charge of various central support services to Cabinet and Treasury Board, as well as Manitoba government departments, agencies, boards, corporations, and commissions.[20]

In 1980, Government Services began to administer the Emergency Measures Organization, providing overall disaster and emergency planning, training, and coordination in Manitoba. From 1980 to 1982, the Department broadened its functions to include responsibility for two independent bodies who report directly to the Minister: the Land Value Appraisal Commission and the Manitoba Disaster Assistance Board. Also in 1980, the Department temporarily took responsibility over the Queen's Printer, the Advertising Audit Office, and the Word Processing Consulting Services Branch; these would also be taken out of the Department's portfolio by 1983.[20]

In 1981, the Pawley-led NDP government appointed Sam Uskiw as both Minister of Highways and Transportation and of Government Services.[18][19]

Reconsolidation (1999–present)Edit

In 1999, the incoming government of Gary Doer combined the Departments of Government Services and of Highways and Transportation into a single portfolio: Manitoba Highways and Government Services.[20]

In January 2001, while the Department formerly changed to Transportation and Government Services, both the Government Services section and the Highways & Transportation continued to operate as individual entities.[22]

The Highways & Transportation section carried out its mandate through 4 key divisions:[22]

  • Policy, Planning and Development — policy, planning, design and development of the transportation infrastructure in Manitoba;
  • Construction and Maintenance — construction and maintenance of provincial highways, bridges, and structures
  • Engineering and Technical Services — planning and technical support for highway construction in Manitoba; and
  • Driver and Vehicle Licensing — regulating transportation via driver licensing, vehicle registration, etc.

The Highways & Transportation section was also in charge of administering the Motor Transport Board, the Highway Traffic Board, the Taxicab Board, the License Suspension Appeal Board, and the Medical Review Committee. In addition to the provision of various support services, Government Services was also responsible for the Land Value Appraisal Commission, the Manitoba Disaster Assistance Appeals Board, and the Manitoba Emergency Measures Organization (MEMO).[22]

In 2006, the Department would be restructured and renamed once again, this time into Manitoba Infrastructure and Transportation.[22] A decade later, in 2016, the name was shortened to the Department of Infrastructure by the incoming government of Brian Pallister, and has retained that name since.[18]

Minister of InfrastructureEdit

The Minister of Infrastructure (French: Ministre de l'Infrastructure) is the cabinet position in the government of Manitoba charged with oversight of the province's Department of Infrastructure.

The current Minister of Infrastructure is Ron Schuler, who was appointed to the portfolio on 3 May 2016 by the Progressive Conservative government of Brian Pallister.[5][6]

Between 1871 and 1967, the portfolio (then titled Minister of Public Works) held oversight over roads and government buildings.[23] Between 1967 and 1999, the portfolio was divided into two positions: Minister of Public Works and the Minister of Highways, both remaining distinct through various administrations and name changes. On occasion, both portfolios were held by the same individual at the same time.[18][19] In 1999, the two ministries were once again united.

Minister historyEdit

In the beginning, the Minister of Agriculture was ex officio the minister responsible for public works.[10] The first Minister of Public Works and Agriculture was appointed by the Lieutenant Governor on 13 January 1871, as a member of Manitoba's Executive Council, established after the first elections in the newly-established province of Manitoba.[10]

The portfolio would carry out the responsibilities of the Board of Public Works from the defunct Council of Assiniboia, and the minister was responsible for overseeing the Manitoba government's involvement in the development and maintenance of roads, bridges, ferries, and related services. Manitoba's first Minister of Public Works and Agriculture was Thomas Howard, who resigned from the position after only ten days in order to exchange portfolios with Provincial Secretary Alfred Boyd.[12]

In December 1874, the ministry was divided, creating a separate Minister of Public Works and a Minister of Agriculture.[10]

In the late 19th century, as Manitoba's population increased significantly, the Department of Public Works became increasingly important in providing services to new arrivals. During the premiership of Rodmond Roblin (1900–15), the Department became especially powerful as a tool of government patronage. Minister Robert Rogers, who held the portfolio for 11 years, was sometimes regarded as the second-most-important figure in the Roblin government.

In the latter part of 1914, Public Works Minister Walter Humphries Montague was forced to announce that expenditures for the province's new legislative buildings would be exceeded by 50%. Roblin was forced to appoint a Royal Commission to study the controversy, and his government resigned from office the following year after the commission report identified instances government corruption and kickbacks. Montague was indicted on fraud charges, but died before legal proceedings could begin.[24]

In later years, however, specific government works were taken away from the Public Works ministry and allocated to separate portfolios. The position gradually came to have less authority, though it remained responsible for road construction and related projects in mid-century. Upon the establishment of an all-party coalition government in 1940, Progressive Conservative (PC) leader Errick French Willis was appointed as Minister of Public Works under a Liberal-Progressive premier, holding the position for 10 years, until the PCs left the coalition.

In 1967, the Department of Highways was created and the Public Works minister at the time, Walter Weir, changed his title to Minister of Highways. However, the Public Works portfolio still remained, and was appointed to Stewart McLean later that year, while Weir continued in the Highways position until his election as premier of Manitoba.

In 1968, the Weir government expanded the role of the Department of Public Works to provide common services needed by all departments. To signal the change in its operation, the department was thereby renamed the Government Services,[16] headed by Thelma Forbes, who kept the "Minister of Public Works" title.[17] Also that year, the Minister of Highways was renamed Minister of Transportation, to which McLean was appointed.[18][19] This name was kept by the NDP administration of Edward Schreyer, who assigned Joseph Borowski to the role in 1969, while changing the "Minister of Public Works" to the "Minister of Government Services" with the appointment of Howard Pawley. In 1970, Peter Burtniak became Minister of Highways (re-renamed from Min. Transportation) after Borowski left the portfolio to become Minister of Public Works (re-renamed).[18][19]

In 1970, the Department of Highways was formally consolidated with Public Works to create the Department of Public Works and Highways. Nonetheless, both Public Works and Highways continued to operate as independent departments until they were officially separated and restructured in 1977/78. This restructuring resulted in the Conservative government of Sterling Lyon dissolving both, to be replaced by the Departments of Government Services and the Department of Highways and Transportation, the two simultaneously headed by Harry Enns in 1978.[15]

In 1981, the Pawley-led NDP government appointed Sam Uskiw as both Minister of Highways and Transportation and of Government Services. In 1987, Highways and Transportation was re-renamed to just the Department of Highways.[18][19]

List of MinistersEdit

Ministers of Public Works, 1871-1967[18][19]
Name Party Took office Left office
Minister of Public Works and Agriculture[10]
Thomas Howard Cons. January 13, 1871 January 23, 1871
Alfred Boyd Gov. January 23, 1871 December 14, 1871
John Norquay Cons. December 14, 1871 July 8, 1874
Edward Hay Lib. July 8, 1874 December 2, 1874
Minister of Public Works
Joseph Royal Cons. December 3, 1874 May 11, 1876
John Norquay May 11, 1876 October 16, 1878
Joseph Royal October 16, 1878 May 1879
Samuel Biggs Gov. May 1879 June 1879
Corydon Brown Lib. June 1879 August 27, 1886
David H. Wilson Cons. August 27, 1886 December 24, 1887
December 26, 1887 January 19, 1888
James Smart Lib. January 19, 1888 May 26, 1892
Robert Watson Lib. May 26, 1892 January 6, 1900
David H. McFadden Cons. January 10, 1900 December 20, 1900
Robert Rogers December 20, 1900 October 7, 1911
Colin H. Campbell October 11, 1911 November 4, 1913
Walter Humphries Montague November 4, 1913 May 12, 1915
Thomas Herman Johnson Lib. May 15, 1915 November 10, 1917
George Grierson November 10, 1917 January 20, 1921
Charles Duncan McPherson January 20, 1921 August 8, 1922
William Clubb UFM August 8, 1922 February 22, 1929
Donald McKenzie (Acting) Prog. February 22, 1929 May 18, 1929
William Clubb May 18, 1929 1932
Lib-Prog. 1932 November 4, 1940
Errick Willis PC November 4, 1940 August 19, 1950
William Morton Lib-Prog. August 19, 1950 January 28, 1955
Francis Campbell Bell January 25, 1955 July 6, 1956
Ronald Robertson July 6, 1956 June 30, 1958
Errick Willis Cons. June 30, 1958 December 21, 1959
John Thompson PC December 21, 1959 October 24, 1962
Walter Weir November 5, 1962 July 22, 1967
Ministers of Public Works and Ministers of Highways, 1967–99[18][19]
Ministers of Public Works Ministers of Highways / Transport
Name Minister of... Party Took office Left office Name Minister of... Party Took office Left office
Stewart McLean Public Works PC July 22, 1967 September 24, 1968 Walter Weir Highways PC July 1, 1967 November 27, 1967
Harry Enns (acting) November 27, 1967 September 24, 1968
Thelma Forbes Government Services September 24, 1968 July 15, 1969 Stewart McLean Transportation PC September 24, 1968 July 15, 1969
Howard Pawley NDP July 15, 1969 December 18, 1969 Joseph Borowski NDP July 17, 1969 September 8, 1971
Russell Paulley December 18, 1969 September 3, 1970
Joseph Borowski Public Works September 3, 1970 September 8, 1971
Russell Doern[i] September 9, 1971 October 24, 1977 Peter Burtniak Highways[ii] September 9, 1971 October 24, 1977
Harry Enns Government Services PC October 24, 1977 October 20, 1978 Harry Enns PC October 24, 1977 October 20, 1978
Sidney Spivak PC October 20, 1978 April 12, 1979 Highways and Transport October 20, 1978 November 15, 1979
Harry Enns April 12, 1979 January 16, 1981 Donald Orchard November 15, 1979 November 30, 1981
Warner H. Jorgenson January 16, 1981 November 30, 1981
Sam Uskiw NDP November 30, 1981 August 20, 1982 Sam Uskiw Highways and Transportation NDP November 30, 1981 November 4, 1983
John Plohman August 20, 1982 November 4, 1983
Aimé Adam November 4, 1983 January 30, 1985 John Plohman November 4, 1983 September 21, 1987
John Plohman January 30, 1985 February 4, 1987
Harry Harapiak February 4, 1987 May 9, 1988 John Bucklaschuk Highways NDP September 21, 1987 May 9, 1988
Albert Driedger PC May 9, 1988 February 5, 1991 Albert Driedger Highways and Transportation PC May 9, 1988 September 10, 1993
Gerald Ducharme February 5, 1991 May 9, 1995
Glen Findlay September 10, 1993 February 5, 1999
Brian Pallister May 9, 1995 January 6, 1997
Frank Pitura January 6, 1997 October 5, 1999
Darren Praznik February 5, 1999 October 5, 1999
Ministers of Infrastructure, 1999–present
Name Party Took office Left office
Minister of Highways and Government Services
Steve Ashton NDP October 5, 1999 January 17, 2001
Minister of Transportation and Government Services
Steve Ashton NDP January 17, 2001 September 25, 2002
Scott Smith September 25, 2002 November 4, 2003
Ron Lemieux November 4, 2003 September 21, 2006
Minister of Infrastructure and Transportation
Ron Lemieux NDP September 21, 2006 November 3, 2009
Steve Ashton November 3, 2009 December 22, 2014
Ron Kostyshyn December 23, 2014 April 29, 2015
Steve Ashton April 29, 2015 May 3, 2016
Minister of Infrastructure
Blaine Pedersen PC May 3, 2016 August 16, 2017
Ron Schuler August 17, 2017 incumbent

NotesEdit

  1. ^ Doern was acting minister until April 13, 1972.
  2. ^ Beginning 22 September 1976, this Minister was also the Minister responsible for Manitoba Public Insurance Corporation.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b https://www.gov.mb.ca/mit/reports/annual/pdf/2019_2020_annual.pdf
  2. ^ "About the Department". Manitoba Infrastructure. Government of Manitoba. Retrieved 26 July 2017.
  3. ^ Weir, Walter. "Statement by Premier Weir on government changes at press conference" (PDF). News Archive. Manitoba Government. Retrieved 28 July 2017. In order that these program, or line, departments can operate more effectively and efficiently, the department of public works has been expanded to provide additional services common to all departments. Its new name is the Department of Government Services.
  4. ^ "A breakdown of provincial cabinet changes". Winnipeg Free Press. Retrieved 30 July 2017.
  5. ^ a b "Brian Pallister sworn in as Manitoba premier". CBC News. May 3, 2016. Retrieved 2016-05-18.
  6. ^ a b "Meet Manitoba's new government cabinet members". CBC News. May 3, 2016. Retrieved 2016-05-18.
  7. ^ a b c "About the Department | Manitoba Infrastructure | Province of Manitoba". www.gov.mb.ca. Retrieved 2021-01-28.
  8. ^ Transportation, Province of Manitoba,Infrastructure and. "Regional Offices | Manitoba Infrastructure | Province of Manitoba". www.gov.mb.ca. Retrieved 2021-01-28.
  9. ^ "Province of Manitoba | Agencies, Boards and Commissions". Province of Manitoba. Retrieved 2021-01-28.
  10. ^ a b c d e f Ministry of Public Works and Agriculture
  11. ^ a b c d e f g h i http://pam.minisisinc.com/SCRIPTS/MWIMAIN.DLL/125279005/1/69/2108?RECORD&DATABASE=AUTHORITY_WEB_INT
  12. ^ a b Ellis, J. H. The Ministry of Agriculture in Manitoba. p. 54.
  13. ^ a b c http://pam.minisisinc.com/scripts/mwimain.dll/144/PAM_AUTHORITY/AUTH_DESC_DET_REP/SISN%202112?sessionsearch
  14. ^ "Bridges and Structures." Archives of Manitoba.
  15. ^ a b c d e f http://pam.minisisinc.com/scripts/mwimain.dll/144/PAM_AUTHORITY/AUTH_DESC_DET_REP/SISN%202109?sessionsearch
  16. ^ a b Weir, Walter. "Statement by Premier Weir on government changes at press conference" (PDF). News Archive. Manitoba Government. Retrieved 28 July 2017. In order that these program, or line, departments can operate more effectively and efficiently, the department of public works has been expanded to provide additional services common to all departments. Its new name is the Department of Government Services.
  17. ^ a b "Thelma Forbes". Passages. Winnipeg Free Press. Retrieved 28 July 2017. In 1968, under new Premier Walter Weir, she became Minister of Government Services.
  18. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "MLA Biographies - Living". Legislative Assembly of Manitoba. Legislative Assembly of Manitoba. Retrieved 24 July 2017.
  19. ^ a b c d e f g h i "MLA Biographies - Deceased". Legislative Assembly of Manitoba. Legislative Assembly of Manitoba. Retrieved 24 July 2017.
  20. ^ a b c d Department of Government Services
  21. ^ a b c Department of Highways and Transportation
  22. ^ a b c d Department of Transportation and Government Services
  23. ^ "MLA Biographies - Deceased". Legislative Assembly of Manitoba. Legislative Assembly of Manitoba. Retrieved 24 July 2017.
  24. ^ Orlikow, Lionel. "The Reform Movement in Manitoba, 1910–1915". Manitoba Historical Society. Retrieved 20 October 2017.

External linksEdit