Posts Tagged ‘budget

Is there a city budget revolt in the works? Councillor Doug Ford’s cryptic comment

- January 14th, 2013

City councillors meet Tuesday to hammer out the 2013 budget.

In the lead up to this budget vote at council, most councillors in the political middle haven’t been complaining that much about the proposed document. But Councillor Doug Ford – the vice-chair of the budget committee – made a cryptic comment Monday ahead of the debate. Ford seems to hint a brewing budget revolt at council might be in the works.

Here’s what Ford told several reporters in the press gallery:

“It’s very, very disturbing that you invite certain people on the executive – they decline. You invite certain people on the budget team – they decline. They decline to show up to one budget meeting. They decline to answer any calls from the chief of staff, from the mayor, from the budget chief. They want to come up and be the big hero again and try to get a couple extra million dollars. It is really unfortunate because this is a great budget, it really is.” 

That perked up the ears of most City Hall reporters scrumming Ford. Asked if he’s worried things are about to change on the council floor, Ford shrugged.

“I’m not worried it is what it is … I think we’ve got the support but then again you never know, they get a little crazy in their head.”

Sounds like the council meeting could get interesting.

Stay tuned tomorrow.

Mayor Ford’s budget battle cry continues

- January 13th, 2013

Mayor Rob Ford

Mayor Rob Ford isn’t missing a chance to tout the 2013 budget.
Ford’s office sent an e-mail to supporters Saturday night highlighting the “good news” in the budget that goes to city council for approval this week.
Here’s the e-mail:

Dear Friends:

I am pleased to be able to tell you the City of Toronto is finally turning the corner financially. After two years of hard work to bring our fiscal house into order, we are finally at a turning point to a sustainable city budget.

The 2013 Budget recommended by Executive Committee this week features better services, lower debt, affordable taxes – and sustainable spending.
Keeping Toronto safe is my top priority, so our 2013 budget recommendation ensures includes:
Hiring 35 more fire prevention officers and firefighters, on top of the 40 new firefighters who will graduate on February 1.
Hiring 50 new full-time and 11 part-time paramedics.
Funding for the ongoing construction of 4 new Fire Stations (1 in Scarborough, 2 in North York and 1 in Etobicoke) and 2 new EMS facilities.
Purchase of a new radio communication systems shared by Police, Fire and EMS.
Funding for new fire fighter bunker suits and breathing apparatus and new defibrillators that help save people’s lives.
And, folks, we’re getting this all done affordably and sustainably.

By achieving a sustainable budget that does not use last year’s one-time savings to fund next years spending commitments, we have created a strong, stable fiscal foundation on which to build our future.

This phenomenal achievement is the result of two years of coordinated effort by Budget Chief Councillor Mike Del Grande, all members of the Budget Committee, Executive Committee, City Council as well as the City Manager, his staff and all City employees working together to succeed.

Together, we reduced hundreds of millions of dollars in cost from our base budgets without affecting the services you rely on. We worked with union leadership to save $150 million in a four-year collective agreement that also give us the flexibility we need to improve customer service, while managing costs. We contracted out garbage collection west of Yonge Street, saving $88 million dollars over eight years and improving customer service in the process.

I am proud to say we are accomplishing the work you elected us to do. There is still more work to be done, but we are seeing the results and turning the corner. I remain as committed as always to getting the rest of the job done in the next two years.

To read my speech to the Executive Committee, click [here]

Remember to tune into “The City” this Sunday at 1:00 pm on Newstalk 1010. I will be joined by a number of great guests to discuss the 2013 Budget and what is happening in Toronto.

Yours truly,

Mayor Rob Ford

Mayor Rob Ford on why he OK’d $6.8 million in spending

- January 11th, 2013

Mayor Rob Ford at executive committee meeting

“Let’s call a spade a spade. The left would have taken it and just wanted to spend it on crazy, stupid things like more social programs, more government housing and more this and that and people have had enough.”

- Mayor Rob Ford explains why he changed the 2013 budget at executive committee (story here) to AM640 host Bill Carroll

Quotable Quotes: City Council recap

- July 9th, 2012

cityhallpic2

Toronto city council meets this week for the last meeting before the summer break (story on that here). Here’s some of the more memorable quotes from city council meetings during the first six months of 2012:

“That whole meeting was irrelevant.”
- Mayor Rob Ford after city council voted in February to revive most of the Transit City plan.

“The people of this city have spoken loud and clear. They want subways,  folks. They want subways, subways, subways.”
- Mayor Rob Ford during the Sheppard subway vs. Sheppard LRT debate at council in March.

“I think we’re going to get sued.”
- Mayor Rob Ford immediately after Toronto city council voted to ban plastic bags starting January 1, 2013.

“Just get rid of the damn bags!”
- Councillor David Shiner urging councillors to support a bag ban at the June city council meeting.

“This is a vote. We’ll get past it. We’re one city. We need to move forward together.”
- TTC chair Karen Stintz on whether she could work with Mayor Rob Ford after the Sheppard subway vote in March.

“My advice to the taxpayer would be don’t send us any more activists, don’t send us any more unionists, don’t send us any more cyclists … Send us some people down here with good common sense who just want to manage the city’s affairs, that’s what’s needed.”
- Deputy Mayor Doug Holyday in April following a debate on contracting out cleaning jobs.

“F— off.”
- Councillor Gord Perks to Councillor Josh Colle during a debate on gun control in May. He later apologized.

“You just don’t get anywhere with these monkeys.”
- Councillor Doug Ford during the debate over the Sheppard subway in March.

“I apologize for saying monkeys.”
- Councillor Doug Ford after councillors demanded an apology for him calling them monkeys during the Sheppard subway debate in March.

“There is no way that you can say that (Mayor Rob Ford) saved the day, that he won the day. He, frankly, lost the day quite miserably.”
- Councillor Joe Mihevc after the 2012 budget vote at city council in January.

“I have never seen councillors so confused as they are today.”
- Speaker Frances Nunziata to council during the March special council meeting on the Sheppard subway.

A Thank-You Note from Mayor Rob Ford

- April 28th, 2012

Mayor Rob Ford and the Pothole

Mayor Rob Ford fills a pothole on Hwy. 27 Friday (Don Peat/Toronto Sun)

News of the city’s $292 million 2011 budget surplus leaked out Friday. The number is big, way bigger than city staff estimated (story here).

Ahead of the number officially coming out Monday, Mayor Rob Ford sent a rare Thank-You e-mail out to all city staff.

Here’s how Ford says thanks:

 

This message is being sent on behalf of Mayor Rob Ford.

 

Managers/supervisors please print and share this message with staff who do not have access to a computer.

 

***

I want to take this opportunity to thank each of you for your extremely hard work and dedication to getting our City’s finances back on track.

 

When I first took office almost 18 months ago, we set out to fix our government’s fiscal foundation.  Through the last two budget cycles, the Core Service Review and the service efficiency reviews, you have worked diligently to find savings.  You looked for and found new ways of delivering benefits to Toronto residents efficiently and effectively.  You demonstrated a commitment to improving customer service and are following through on that commitment.  The directions given by the City Manager and the Chief Financial Officer have been demanding.  I know that each of you have put in countless hours of hard work to meet those demands.

 

The 2011 year-end financials that will become public on Monday make it crystal clear that your hard work has paid off to benefit all who live and do business in this great city.  The hundreds of millions of dollars in permanent and sustainable savings that were realized in the 2012 Budget is a direct result of your tireless efforts throughout 2011 to contain costs while providing quality benefits to the residents of Toronto.

 

The people of Toronto elected me to fix Toronto’s fiscal foundation and I want to thank you for helping to achieve that goal with me.  While the work is not quite done yet, we are closer today than ever before.  We can begin to build on that fiscal foundation to improve the lives of every resident and make Toronto the best city in the world to live, play, work and invest.

 

On behalf of City Council, please accept my sincere appreciation for a job well done.

 

Yours truly,

 

Mayor Rob Ford

City of Toronto