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2024 Sport and Recreation Budgets in Canada

Budget 2024 invests $30 million in a new Community Recreation Centre Infrastructure Program to help ensure growing communities have the facilities they need to stay healthy, and youth have opportunities to participate in sports activities.

The Ministry of Tourism and Sport supports the growth and diversification of Alberta’s tourism industry, programs and services that provide Albertans with options to be physically active, and the development of Alberta’s amateur athletes at the provincial, national and international levels. Operating expense for 2024-25 is $126 million, an increase of $14 million, or 12.7 per cent over the 2023-24 forecast, with Travel Alberta Corporation receiving $8 million of the increase for the implementation of the 10-year Tourism Strategy, including support for air access and resort development. Funding also continues for the Canadian Finals Rodeo and Hockey Canada (including the 2027 International Ice Hockey Federation World Junior Championship).

The Capital Plan also continues to provide opportunities for Albertans to enjoy arts, culture, sports, and recreational activities, to make Alberta a welcoming and attractive place to live, work, and play. (1% of the entire capital spending).

The 2024 Capital Plan allocates $323 million to arts, sports, and recreation, which play an important role in making Alberta a welcoming and an attractive place to live, play, and visit.

The government continues to provide funding for the Community Facility Enhancement Program (CFEP), at $125 million over the next three years. CFEP supports non-profit organizations to acquire, construct, upgrade, or redevelop public use community facilities. A new initiative is the Community Recreation Centre Infrastructure Program. This program will provide funding of $10 million per year to support the development or renewal of small and mid-sized projects such as indoor and outdoor hockey arenas and rinks, community pools, indoor turf centres, pickleball courts, sports fields and courts, and other recreational facilities. 

Alberta has unparalleled natural beauty, including world-class trails enjoyed by both Albertans and visitors to our province. The government has allocated $23 million to upgrade and construct new trails to enhance visitor experience while they enjoy Alberta’s scenic landscapes.

Specific projects named in budget 2024:

Calgary Event Centre – Community Rink 15 Million

Canmore Nordic Centre Infrastructure Upgrades 9 million

Crown Land Trails 6 million

Kananaskis Area Trail Upgrades 3 million

Other Sports and Recreation Projects 6 million

To bolster this investment, an additional $93 million in 2023/24 will provide a further $20 million for active transportation grants to communities

These investments are in addition to incremental capital funding provided in Budget 2024 over the next three years, including $50 million in Active Transportation 

The University of British Columbia – Recreation Centre North ($68 million);

Consumer Spending and Inflation 

Higher interest rates and high prices continued to soften consumer demand and reduce purchasing power. Further, Statistics Canada reported that the port labour relations dispute in B.C. impacted retailers through the summer of 2023. Consumer spending on goods remained muted throughout most of last year as a result, but has picked up since September. Year-to-date to November 2023, B.C. nominal retail sales rose by 0.8 per cent compared to the same period of 2022. Meanwhile, consumer prices rose by 4.0 per cent over the same period, indicating a lower volume of sales. Year-to-date sales growth was led by increased spending at clothing, accessories and related retailers (+12.6 per cent), health and personal care retailers (+10.3 per cent) and general merchandise stores (+5.8 per cent). Declines in spending were led by lower sales at gasoline stations (-7.9 per cent), sporting goods, hobby and related retailers (-11.5 per cent), as well as building material and garden equipment and supplies dealers (-14.1 per cent).

Introducing the Community Sport and Recreation Infrastructure Fund 

Ontario is investing $200 million over three years in a new application‐based local Community Sport and Recreation Infrastructure Fund, demonstrating the government’s commitment to provide children, families and seniors across Ontario with new and improved opportunities to participate in sport and recreational activities. The fund will support a growing population by investing in new and revitalized sport, recreation and community facilities for youth and families. Addressing the critical need for infrastructure support in the sport and recreation sectors will ensure that the people of Ontario can live, work and play in their local communities

$440.5 million over five years for supporting communities by promoting sustainable participation in recreation and sports in a safe environment, increasing the public safety intervention capacity, and strengthening legal support and services for vulnerable individuals; 

Broken down: 

$85.8 million of that 440.5 Million for promoting sustainable participation in recreation and sports in a safe environment; ($46.7 million for improving accessibility and safety in recreation and sports as follows: — $29.7 million for better protecting the integrity of persons in recreation and sports; — $8.0 million for improving aquatic safety; — $9.0 million for improving accessibility to sports and recreation. ) — $39.1 million for supporting major sports competitions as follows $28.0 million over five years for continuing the funding of new infrastructure projects for the Jeux du Québec; — $11.1 million over three years for supporting the organization of the 2027 Canada Games in Québec city. ) 

The regional action support program is the Secrétariat à la Capitale-Nationale’s main tool for supporting tourism, economic and cultural projects. It supports some one hundred economic, tourism, cultural and sports projects each year, contributing to the region’s development and influence. To maintain the appeal of the Capitale-Nationale region, the government is providing $16.8 million over four years for the regional action support program. 

The Province of Manitoba is investing over $4-million more in new, annual and sustainable funding for sport and cultural organizations.

Budget 2024 increases funding to Sport Manitoba for anti-racism and safe sport initiatives for provincial sports organizations. Through Sport Manitoba, the government supports funding to 71 provincial sports organizations and other Manitoba-based sport partners to develop athletes, coaches, officials, and volunteers in the province and implement Manitoba’s Safe Sport Strategy, including policy development, education, and awareness.

Investing $233-million of total funding for the Federal/Provincial Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program (ICIP) will go towards continuing projects in five funding infrastructure streams of public transit, green infrastructure, community, culture and recreation, rural and northern communities and COVID-19 resilience, supporting an array of capital projects such as roadways, water treatment facilities, community centres, post-secondary institutions, information technology systems, transmission lines, and floodways.

The Capital Plan will provide $301.9 million to support program and service delivery to meet the growing needs of Saskatchewan families and communities. Government services investments include building upgrades, provincial dam rehabilitation, courts and correctional facilities, parks and recreational facilities, and Information Technology management systems.

GO NB! - Taking Action Through Sport  taking action through sport, increasing from 300,000 to 394,000

Sport Development Trust Fund 100,000

To assist rural districts in the purchase of emergency equipment, construction and repair of fire halls as well as repairs to community centers and recreation facilities. 1 Million

14.1 Million To carry out improvements to provincial parks, attractions and heritage sites.

$3.2 million for the Children’s Sport and Art Tax Credit of $500 to support children participating in sports and arts programs

Population growth has translated into strong labour force and employment growth in 2023. Employment growth of 2.7 per cent outpaced the labour force growth of 2.4 per cent. The unemployment rate in 2023 fell to 6.3 per cent, the lowest annual average since 1970. Growth in the working age population was slightly faster than employment growth, causing the employment rate to edge down to 57.6 per cent. Nova Scotia’s participation rate declined from 61.7 per cent in 2022 to 61.5 per cent in 2023 with lower participation for those aged 15-29 and 65 years and over. Employment increases across service-producing sectors offset declines in Nova Scotia’s good-producing industries. Service sector employment growth was broad based, with notable increases in wholesale and retail trade, information, culture and recreation, personal and repair services and accommodation and food services. Increases in these sectors more than offset declines in health care and social assistance (including daycares) and business support services (including call centres). The job vacancy rate declined throughout the year and reached 4.1 per cent in the third quarter of 2023.

Sustained inflation in 2023 resulted in nominal growth in some sectors, such as wholesale and retail trade, though growth in real GDP was limited. Population growth supported growth in utilities, transportation, information and culture, administration and support, and arts, entertainment and recreation (Table 7.2). Construction real GDP is estimated to have been weak in 2023 as capacity constraints and high prices limited expansion. Goods sector industries are projected to recover in 2024, though mining GDP is projected to decline with Touquoy gold mine concluding operations by 2024. Continued population growth is expected to support Nova Scotia’s service sector going forward.

Capital Expenditure Fisheries, Tourism, Sport and Culture 

Capital Improvements - Buildings (Museum and Heritage Sites) 300,000

Equipment and Other Capital Assets 2,975,000

Confederation Trail 100,000

Golf Courses 500,000

Provincial Parks 2,250,000

Capital Improvements - Highways Appropriations provided for highway and bridge construction Active Transportation 1,000,000

Education and Early Years 

Equipment and Other Capital Assets Appropriations provided for information technology and equipment purchases 

Childhood Recreation 200,000


Appropriations provide for the support of physical activity, recreation and sport and the promotion of active healthy living initiatives throughout the province. 

Grants and Subsidies 7,621,500


Appropriations provide for the operation of the Provincial Training Centre. 

Grants and Subsidies 434,800


Appropriations provide for the infrastructure needs of the Newfoundland and Labrador Sports Centre Inc. 

Grants and Subsidies 13,500,000

  • $13 million to build a new indoor domed turf facility which will include exercise rehabilitation, as well as allow for year-round sports and recreational activity.

  • $500,000 for planning a new multiplex recreational facility in the St. John’s Metro Region.

Concert and Sport Ticket Fairness 

When it comes to sporting and event tickets, Canadians are looking for transparent, up-front pricing, and fair practices to keep costs low. The federal government, including the Competition Bureau, is doing its part to enforce federal protections against deceptive marketing practices, including hidden fees and charges. Some provinces have taken steps to help their residents, such as Ontario’s Ticket Sales Act which implemented protections for consumers buying event tickets. Some other provinces need to do more to strengthen their consumer protection laws to safeguard the interests of Canadians. To make entertainment prices fair for everyone, Budget 2024 announces that: The federal government will work with provinces and territories and encourage them to adopt best practice requirements for ticket sales, with three priority goals: ­ Ticket sales transparency, to continue to protect Canadians from unexpected charges through upfront, all-in pricing; ­ Stronger protections for Canadians, including against excess fees and better ensuring they get timely refunds when events are cancelled; and, ­ Cracking down on fraudulent resellers and reseller practices which unfairly drive up prices, such as using bot technology to maliciously buy and resell tickets.

Supporting Canada’s National Athletes 

Our high-performance national athletes represent Canadian sporting excellence on the world’s biggest stages, including the Olympic and Paralympic Games. They inspire the next generation of athletes to dream big. The Athlete Assistance Program provides financial support for high performance athletes, enabling them to combine their sport, working, and academic careers while training to compete for Canada. Budget 2024 proposes to provide $35 million over five years, starting in 2024-25, and $7 million ongoing to the Department of Canadian Heritage, for the Athlete Assistance Program. This would increase the funding allowance for supported athletes and support additional athletes in new Olympic and Paralympic sport disciplines. 

Budget 2024 proposes to provide $16 million over two years, starting in 2024-25, to the Department of Canadian Heritage for the Sport Support Program. This will help create a safer and more welcoming sport environment for athletes, from amateur to Olympian. Priorities will include preventing and addressing maltreatment, supporting those with concussions and mental health issues, and advancing inclusion, diversity, equity, and accessibility

Community Sports for Everyone 

Community sports for youth, for seniors, and for newcomers can help people live healthier, happier lifestyles, and feel a greater sense of belonging and connectedness with their community. Helping more Canadians, of all ages, to build a healthier life can mean fewer trips to the doctor, lower risk of major life changing illnesses, and, in general, ageing with more energy and more independence. Sport enables people to more fully participate in the economy, and lowers the burden on our health care systems, reducing costs in the long-term. Budget 2024 proposes to provide $15 million over two years, starting in 2024-25 to the Department of Canadian Heritage to help support community sport programming and reduce barriers to sport participation.

This funding makes sports more accessible for young Canadians by helping cover the costs of community sports programs, ensuring every child has the opportunity to participate.

Future of Sport in Canada Commission 

For young people, playing sports is a part of life. It is not just about being active and healthy, it’s about being on a team, having a group of friends, and discovering the excellence that you’re capable of achieving. For some, that can lead them to competitive leagues and high-level training that means being away from their families for hours, if not weeks at a time. No matter the level of competition, as young athletes train, they must always be safe. Shocking evidence and allegations of sexual abuse and unsafe environments in Canadian competitive sports have brought to light a culture that has left young athletes at risk. This is absolutely unacceptable. A thorough review of sports in Canada is needed to protect young Canadians, and ensure they can safely participate in, and enjoy, their favourite sports. The Minister of Sport and Physical Activity announced the Future of Sport in Canada Commission on December 11, 2023, to engage and seek input from the sport community and make recommendations to improve safety in sport. Budget 2024 proposes to provide $10.6 million over two years, starting in 2024-25, to Canadian Heritage, to support the operations of the Future of Sport in Canada Commission in its review of the Canadian sport system. 

More Community Centres 

Community facilities, like libraries, cultural and community centres, and recreation facilities, are essential spaces for social interaction where Canadians can come together as neighbours. Recreation facilities help people build healthier lives, improving well-being and longevity. Libraries build literacy and learning, especially for young minds, and provide internet access for people with low incomes who can’t afford it at home. The Green and Inclusive Community Buildings program is providing $1.5 billion to support green and accessible retrofits and upgrades of existing public community facilities, as well as the construction of new publicly-accessible community facilities across Canada. The program is investing in projects like the retrofit of the Connections Early Years Family Centre in Windsor to make it more accessible and energy efficient, and an upgraded, energy efficient Band Office and daycare facility in Kapawe’no First Nation in Alberta. Budget 2024 proposes to provide $500 million over five years, starting in 2024-25, to Infrastructure Canada to support more projects through the Green and Inclusive Community Buildings program

Supporting Urban Indigenous Peoples 

Indigenous Peoples, no matter where they reside, should have access to culture and services. Indigenous people in urban areas face unique challenges to accessing the services and cultural supports they need. This funding supports organisations to deliver effective, culturally appropriate programs and services, including housing support, to urban Indigenous Peoples in safe and accessible spaces, and improve coordination with provincial and territorial services. Budget 2024 proposes to provide: $60 million over two years, starting in 2024-25, to support Friendship Centres, across the country, which provide much-needed supports and services to members of their communities across a range of areas including health, housing, education, recreation, language, justice, employment, economic development, culture, and community wellness.

Investing in Canada’s Parks 

Canadians take great pride in the natural wonders that our country has to offer. From the oceans to the mountains, to the tundra, and the lakes, grasslands, and deserts in between, Parks Canada protects and conserves some of the most iconic places in Canada for the enjoyment of Canadians—and visitors from around the world. There are over 200 world-renowned national parks, national marine conservation areas, national urban parks, and national historic sites in Canada. These parks support good jobs, support our tourism industry, and they preserve and protect Canada’s natural and historical legacy. We need to make sure that they continue to be there for generations to come. Budget 2024 proposes to provide $156.7 million over five years, starting in 2024-25, with $388.5 million in remaining amortisation, to the Parks Canada Agency for capital investments in Canada’s national parks, national marine conservation areas, and historic sites. 

Budget 2024 proposes to provide $36.1 million over five years, starting in 2024-25, with $8.2 million in remaining amortisation, and $4.6 million per year ongoing to create Ojibway National Urban Park in Windsor, Ontario. Ojibway National Urban Park, developed in partnership with the City of Windsor and Indigenous partners including the Walpole Island and Caldwell First Nations, is another example of how different orders of government can work together to protect the environment and advance reconciliation.


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