WINNIPEG – A motion directing the Public Service to implement a ‘buy local’ procurement procedure will be tabled at this morning’s Executive Policy Committee Mayor Brian Bowman announced today.

“To support Winnipeg’s growth into the future, we must protect Winnipeg’s long-term competitiveness,” said Mayor Brian Bowman. “This means finding ways to continue supporting our local businesses who are a vital part of a growing and thriving economy.”

The Mayor said the City of Winnipeg is an important local buyer. Of the 21,000 suppliers to the City of Winnipeg, almost half are located in Manitoba. In 2016, the City of Winnipeg made almost $600 million in local purchases.

“Local businesses competed and earned these contracts, but more can be done to support local businesses,” said Mayor Bowman who committed in last month’s State of the City Address to task the Public Service with preparing a ‘buy local’ procurement procedure.

The motion will direct the Public Service to amend the Material Management Policy by introducing a buy local procurement procedure for all City of Winnipeg contracts valued at less than $100,000, and to report back to Council within 60 days on how implementation of the new ‘buy local’ procedure is progressing.

The motion requires Council review and approval following today’s review by Executive Policy Committee.

Mayor Bowman said the introduction of a ‘buy local’ procurement procedure builds on previous steps taken to support Winnipeg businesses. The Mayor said over the last four years the City of Winnipeg’s business tax rate has been reduced every single year representing a cumulative reduction of 9.8 percent, and in his recent State of the City Address committed to continue these steps to eventually eliminate the business tax.

“We are the last Canadian city with a business tax, and the best support we can give to those fueling our economy in so many different ways is to be clear on the direction and commitment to ending it once and for all,” said Mayor Bowman