Toronto faces at least $89 million in-year budget cut from Ford government
2019-05-14 from ipolitics.ca
TORONTO—The provincial funding cuts the City of Toronto will be forced to swallow this year could come in at $89 million, or reach $146 million or more, according to information from the city and province.
Since Ontario’s April 11 budget was released, news has trickled out on an almost daily basis about cuts in different areas. As a result, the two governments have been engaged in an escalating war of words. The exchange reached a new peak on Wednesday when Social Services Minister Lisa MacLeod released a letter to Toronto Mayor John Tory, attacking him for not being as critical of the federal government as he has been of Ontario.
It appears that the best case scenario for Toronto politicians is figuring out how to manage an $89 million cut to expected transfers from the province. The hit will have to be absorbed having already passed a budget and being legally unable to run a deficit.
The $89 million total figure comes from numbers provided by the city and then verified, and sometimes adjusted, based on information from the province. It includes:
- $27 million cut to child care;
- $24 million cut in funding from the gas tax that the city says was to be used for public transit maintenance;
- $33 million cut to Toronto Public Health;
- $5.6 million cut to Toronto Tourism.
Mayor Tory has called the cuts to the city’s $13.34 billion budget a “very significant number” that will hurt programs “vital” to Toronto. The city is calling for the province to reverse the cuts in order to save daycare spaces, and initiatives like well-baby and vaccination programs.
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