I whole heartedly agree with a couple of our City Councillors who are against the idea of using revenues from a new casino to cover the increasing need for funds to maintain our city infrastructure. Jim Watson isn’t thinking with a clear head when he makes this sort of suggestion – and perhaps, this is an indication of just how desperate the situation really is.
I don’t care one way or the other if the City builds a new casino – or two – or three of them. What I do care about is making the right budget decisions when it comes to the bare basics of running and maintaining the City.
I propose that our tax dollars are used for the absolute essentials: police, fire, paramedics, roads, infrastructure – and 35% of the staffing costs (approximately what I think is truly needed in terms of FTE city jobs). Whatever funds come from Rideau Carleton and any new gambling facility can be used for the “nice-to have” budget items and any staffing beyond 35% of the current level. I would even like to see the two accounts kept completely separate!!
Most of us manage our households this way – we cover the basics first (mortgage, property taxes, food, clothing, transportation, utilities). If we have money left over, it is held in savings or we spend it on the “nice to haves” – vacations, large TVs, etc. Some of us manage a second job to pay for the extras.
Take a risk on being able to manage the basics? NEVER!
If I remember correctly, the revenue from the gas tax (2%/litre in Ontario) was to be used for the repair and
construction of roads by the municipalities. With the price of gas that should go a long way to providing enough revenue for infrastructure.
You are absolutely right!! Wonder what happened there?