2011 City Budget Launched
The proposed 2011 City Budget was released at City Hall this week. This year, the City will consider its Capital, Operating, Water and Solid Waste budgets together and in a shorter period of time.
The budget will determine how much funding is available to deliver the City programs, services, and facilities that residents rely on every day. I want you to understand how the budget will affect these services, and I want to hear your views.
Over the next three weeks, the Budget Committee and Council will debate, make changes and approve the budget. Your input can make a difference.
Below you will find more information about the 2011 budget proposals and the next article in this newsletter details how to get involved. For more information about the budget, you can view the City web page at www.toronto.ca/budget2011.
The 2011 proposed budget has been balanced by drawing on our savings (reserves), reducing services and using the one-time surplus of $350 Million from 2009 and 2010. With a tax increase of 0% and the elimination of $64 million in revenue from the Personal Vehicle Tax, the City has fewer ongoing revenues to build a sustainable budget for the future.
The following is a summary of some of most important features of the proposed 2011 Budget.
Property Taxes, Water Rates and Garbage Fees
• The proposed property tax rate increase from last year is 0%, so your property tax bill should stay the same.
• The proposed Water Rate increase is 9% over last year, which will cost the average homeowner an additional $60 per year on their water bill
• The proposed Garbage Bin Fee increase is 3%, which will cost the average household $6-$12 per year, depending on the size of bin used.
Parks and Recreation
• Fees for recreation programs will increase 3% over last year
• Adults taking programs at designated Priority Recreation Centres, such as the Secord Recreation Centre, will now have to pay fees for programs.
• The Urban Affairs Library at Metro Hall will be closed, and the collections and staff moved to the Toronto Reference Library.
• The number of books purchased for circulation will be significantly reduced, meaning you will wait much longer to borrow some books
• Funding to support tenants will be cut by $100,000
• The TTC has proposed reducing the service on 48 routes, including the 62 Mortimer Bus after 10pm on weekends and holidays.
• Fares may be frozen if the City and TTC can find $24m in cuts elsewhere in the budget to offset the cost
• 200 to 250 positions will not be filled when officers retire in 2011
Toronto Water Programs
• Drain Grant Program that provides $1500 to property owners for broken sewer pipes will be eliminated
• Water efficient toilet and washer rebate program eliminated
• Lead Water Service replacement program reduced
2011 Budget Process
Once the public hearings have been completed, the budget will be considered at the following meetings:
• January 19: Budget Committee Hearings at the East York Civic Centre (see www.janetdavis.ca for more information) and the North York Civic Centre.
• January 20: Budget Committee Hearings at the York and Scarborough Civic Centres
• January 24 and 25: further Budget Committee meetings
• February 10: Budget Committee Final Review of the 2011 Budget
• February 17: Executive Committee reviews the Budget
• February 23, 24, 25, and 28: Toronto City Council meeting to approve the budget
Councillor Janet Davis
100 Queen Street West,
2nd Floor, Suite C57
Toronto, ON M5H 2N2
East York Civic Centre
850 Coxwell Avenue
East York, ON M4C 5R1