$868M funding shortfall prompts push for more provincial cash in Mississauga and Peel

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Published June 11, 2024 at 12:08 pm

Funding shortfall for Mississauga.

Mississauga is again pushing the provincial government for hundreds of millions of dollars to help fix what the city sees as an ongoing and massive underfunding of social and municipal services both in Canada’s seventh-largest city and across Peel.

Councillors are expected to discuss a notice of motion at Wednesday’s council meeting that calls for Mississauga officials to pressure the province for additional cash and to meet with city brass to get the ball quickly rolling on more funding.

The motion, tabled by Ward 11 Coun. Brad Butt, asks that:

  • council push the province, Premier Doug Ford, ministers and local MPPs “to make an immediate commitment to providing a fair, new deal for Mississauga to ensure municipal and social services in Mississauga receive an equitable share of provincial investment”
  • council call on the province to meet with the city and non-profit groups “to work together on a plan to address provincial underfunding of municipal and social services in Mississauga”

In the notice of motion, Butt again pushes for recognition by the provincial government that both Mississauga and Peel are significantly underfunded and action to address the matter by sending more dollars the city and region’s way.

It’s a battle that’s been waged for decades — dating back to the early 1990s — between Mississauga, Peel and the province.

City officials have said chronic funding shortfalls have, among other impacts, led to longer wait times and less equitable access to services for Mississauga residents and local communities.

Butt noted that as a “world-class city that’s an economic engine for Ontario and Canada,” Mississauga and its residents must be able “to access and rely upon appropriate social services and supports such as child care, seniors care, mental health care” and other services in order to “thrive and succeed.”

The notice of motion points out a recent report from Peel’s Metamorphosis Network found residents of the region’s three municipalities “receive less provincial funding for municipal and social services than the average resident of Ontario municipalities, receiving an average of $578 less, annually, per person.”

The report also noted the cumulative gap in funding “amounts to over $868 million in underfunding across Peel, on average each year, and almost half a billion dollars for Mississauga alone.”

The Metamorphosis Network is comprised of more than 100 non-profit community services agencies that have joined forces to ensure services are “fully funded, effective and meet the needs of the community.”

To help cover the cash shortfall over the years, Mississauga has increased property taxes and introduced user fees, the notice of motion noted.

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