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Taxpayers Federation slams Toronto City Council vote to double councillor budgets and possible salary hike

December 05, 2018
Taxpayers Federation slams Toronto City Council vote to double councillor budgets and possible salary hike

TORONTO, ON:  The Canadian Taxpayers Federation (CTF) is slamming today’s vote at Toronto City Hall where councillors voted 18-8 in favour of doubling their office budgets from $241,000 to $482,000.

“Today was the first day back at work for these councillors, and what was the most important thing on their agenda? Giving themselves more money,” said CTF Ontario Director Christine Van Geyn.

The budget doubling comes after the move by the Ontario provincial government to reduce the total number of Toronto city councillors to 25, which means councillors now represent more constituents.

“Instead of looking for efficiencies, these 18 city councillors are looking for more from taxpayers. They had an opportunity to do better with the money taxpayers already give them and they squandered it,” continued Van Geyn. “Representing more constituents doesn’t require double the budget. There are sunk costs for things like websites that councillors don’t need more of. There are economies of scale. If councillors can’t apply basic principles like these when managing their office budget, it doesn’t inspire much faith they can manage the city’s budget.”

The city council also asked the city manager to come back with a report on salaries for councillors, who are currently paid $111,956 plus benefits of about $27,000.

“Toronto city councillors voted to give themselves a 2.1 per cent pay increase last year, and now they’re setting themselves up for yet another raise. Meanwhile they keep raising our property taxes. They expect taxpayers to do more with less, but aren’t willing to do the same,” concluded Van Geyn.

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