The Canadian Press
OTTAWA — National Defence auditors have found that many of Canada's military bases are literally falling apart because of chronic underspending on maintenance and repairs.
The Liberal budget in March set aside more than $200 million over two years to fix armouries, aircraft hangars, naval jetties and military housing across the country.
But that money won't address the problems identified by the auditors, which deal with the basic utilities needed to operate military facilities, such as electrical and heating systems, drinking water and sewer systems and even roads.
Complicating matters is the fact the bases themselves often have little to no information on the state of those systems, in part because of poor record-keeping but also because infrastructure is not checked on a regular basis.
As a result, the department doesn't actually know how many hundreds of millions of dollars — if not billions — it will cost to repair or replace all of the decrepit infrastructure, more than half of which has already exceeded its 50-year life expectancy.
The auditors say the risk of service disruptions at military bases will increase as long as the problems aren't addressed.