11/21/2012 08:11 EST | Updated 01/21/2013 05:12 EST

Budget infrastructure cuts worry Montreal mayor

Newly elected Montreal Mayor Michael Applebaum says he's concerned about what the $1.5-billion cut in infrastructure spending announced in Tuesday's budget will mean for the city.

Applebaum said the city had been asking the province to invest another $2-billion in infrastructure.

"We have to get some more information and clarification," he said in a news conference Tuesday night.

Applebaum added that the city won't be spending new money on infrastructure projects until the province makes changes to its new anti-corruption legislation.

He says Bill 1 does not go far enough because it would apply solely to contracts of more than $50 million — something Applebaum says is rare in Montreal.

"I can't go out to tenders until I am sure … that there is no collusion and corruption," he said.

On Monday, Applebaum asked the Quebec government to investigate the top 100 companies that do business with Montreal, in order to ensure they comply with existing laws.

Louise Harel, leader of Vision Montréal, was also critical the PQ budget. She said that Finance Minister Nicolas Marceau's budget treated Montreal like a footnote.

"Despite an unemployment rate of 9.6 per cent, the obsolescence of the 19 municipal industrial parks, the lack of a soil remediation program, and the fragility of the manufacturing sector, there is no action plan for Montreal provided in the Marceau budget," she said.

But Applebaum said the provincial budget does have some benefits for the city.

He highlighted the $200 million for the electrification of Montreal's public transit. He said the province's plan to subsidize cleaner public transit meshes well with Montreal's approach.

He also said the budget will benefit the city's manufacturing industry through tax breaks.

Applebaum said he plans to sit down with the provincial government over the next couple weeks to see how Montreal can work in collaboration with the PQ.