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Taxpayers fed-up with big-spending councillors and mayors

Author: Franco Terrazzano 13/10/2020

CALGARY, AB: The Canadian Taxpayers Federation delivered more than 13,800 petition signatures to the minister of municipal affairs from Albertans who want their municipal governments to cut wasteful spending and taxes.

“Taxpayers are fed-up with their big spending councillors and mayors,” said Franco Terrazzano, the CTF’s Alberta Director. “We delivered these petitions to show Municipal Affairs Minister Tracy Allard that Albertans are tired of forking over more money because their councillors don’t want to tighten their belts.”

The CTF delivered these petitions ahead of 2021 budget deliberations and in response to Alberta’s cities pushing for new tax powers and rural municipalities threatening significant tax increases.

Alberta’s municipal per person spending is the second highest among provinces (behind Ontario where municipalities also deliver a range of social services), according to the Blue Ribbon Panel on Alberta’s finances. The panel also noted that between 2007 and 2017 municipalities “have experienced significant revenue growth of 48 per cent per person … primarily driven by municipal property tax increases.”

Alberta’s municipal government labour costs have increased by 17 per cent between 2014 and 2018, while compensation for Alberta workers declined by six per cent, according to government data published in the CTF’s 2020 Municipal Labour Report.

“Alberta’s municipal governments are some of the biggest spenders in Canada and it’s time for councillors and mayors to tighten their belts instead of reaching for more tax dollars,” said Terrazzano. “Alberta taxpayers need Allard to reject calls for new municipal taxes and force councillors and mayors to cut the fat.”

You can find the CTF’s online petition here.