Mayor Bonnie Crombie And Peel Regional Chair Respond To Ford's Reversal On Cuts

 

Mayor Bonnie Crombie and Regional Chair of Peel Nando Iannicca have responded to Ford's letter reversing cuts to public health, child care and land ambulances.

Recently, the Ford government cut funding for early years/childcare programs by $6.1 million, housing and homeless programs by $1.3 million, prisoner Transport by $600,000, natural Hazards Funding by $700,000 and Metrolinx Funding for Smart Commute by $300,000. Earlier this year, the Ontario government also planned to merge the 59 local ambulance services and public health units in Ontario into just 10 units.

After many protests from the Large Urban Mayor's Caucus of Ontario, other mayors and residents, the government chose to hold the cuts.

Earlier this week, Ford wrote a letter to the municipal mayors stating that the provincial government will maintain support for the services.

"Having spent time at the city level I also understand that, with municipal budgets already set for the 2019-20 fiscal year, our partners need to have flexibility to achieve those savings. Our government has made the decision to maintain the in-year cost-sharing adjustments for land ambulance, public health and child care services," wrote Ford in the letter.

The Region of Peel recently stated that they are pleased with Premier Ford's decision to restore provincial funding for public services such as child care, emergency services (paramedics) and public health for the fiscal year of 2019 to 2020.

"This is a step in the right direction to ensure that the Region of Peel can continue to provide these essential services. We will continue to explore opportunities for dialogue on how the Province can meet its budget objectives by delivering services efficiently and responsibly, ensuring that taxpayers receive value for their hard-earned tax dollars," said Regional Chair and Former Mississauga Councillor Nando Iannicca.

Ford is still pushing municipalities to find efficiencies. Recently, the Ontario government committed $7.35 million, through the Audit and Accountability Fund, to help large municipalities find four cents on every dollar to find efficiencies.

According to the letter, Minister Clark advised taking the approach so Ontario's municipalities can have additional time to work with the Government of Ontario find efficiencies that will help with Ontario's debt.

Mayor Bonnie Crombie also took to Twitter to share her thoughts on the change.

"This is positive news. I’m pleased Premier Ford and Minister Steve Clark listened to Mayors across the province. I look forward to working together to find new ways of doing business while maintaining services essential for residents," tweeted Mayor Crombie.

You can read more about Ford's letter to municipality mayors, here.

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