Two federal cabinet portfolios directly related to housing development issues have changed hands in Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s shuffle.
Catherine McKenna, the new Minister of Infrastructure, will now oversee and guide the government’s $190 billion infrastructure plan at the halfway point of its 12-year cycle.
The Ottawa Centre MP inherits the infrastructure portfolio from Francois-Philippe Champagne.
Trudeau unveiled his new cabinet Wednesday in a swearing in ceremony at Rideau Hall.
In her term as environment minister, McKenna, a lawyer, was in charge of implementing the controversial federal carbon tax plan which has been strongly opposed publicly and in the courts by several provincial premiers, including Ontario’s Doug Ford.
McKenna, 48, several times had to resort to forcing it on any province that didn’t come up with their own equivalent system.
Champagne becomes Canada’s minister of foreign affairs.
Ahmed Hussen, who was the minister responsible for immigration, becomes the new minister of Families, Children and Social Development. In that capacity, Hussen is responsible for the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC).
As a Crown Corporation (and the largest in terms of assets) CMHC assists housing for all Canadians. It’s mandate is to provide mortgage liquidity, assist in affordable housing development and provide the federal government and the housing industry with unbiased research and advice.
Hussen, a lawyer, is the MP for York South-Weston in Toronto.
In 2018, Hussen criticized Ontario's then Minister of Children, Community and Social Services Lisa MacLeod — who is also responsible for the immigration file — for walking away from discussions between other immigration ministers and for refusing to sign the official communique issued after the meetings.
Hussen, 43, had called out Ontario's "false language" regarding the issue of asylum seekers, saying it was "irresponsible, it's divisive, it's fearmongering and it's not Canadian, and it's very dangerous."
MacLeod was later removed from that portfolio in a Doug Ford cabinet shuffle.