July 11th, 2019

NDP says costs belong on Ford's account, not Hamilton taxpayers

HAMILTON — Sandy Shaw, NDP Finance critic and MPP For Hamilton West-Ancaster Dundas, says a potential 6.7 per cent tax hike for Hamilton families is a Ford Tax — and Doug Ford can stop it by reversing his cuts.

Early estimates from Hamilton city staff presented Monday indicate that the average property tax bill could rise $237 in 2020. That's because Hamiltonians need to make up for Doug Ford's cuts and planned cuts to social services, public health, child care, paramedics, and long-term care, as well as a transit transfer payment that Ford has yanked away.

"Families have already been feeling squeezed financially, and Doug Ford is planning to take it from bad to worse for folks," said Shaw. "By cutting funding for ambulances and public health, he's telling Hamiltonians to pay more, or be less healthy and less safe. That's just wrong.

"The only person who can stop the Ford Tax is Doug Ford. He needs to reverse the cuts, and stop taking things away from people. These cuts don't save any money, they just push the costs right down onto people."

Ford's first budget spends more than the last Kathleen Wynne budget, yet still cuts vital services and pushes billions in costs onto municipalities. Shaw said it's shocking that Ford can find more than $150 million for the fallout of his botched Hydro One firings, $30 million for anti-environment advertising, and millions more for his patronage appointments while cutting things that support people and families — a budget choice she believes doesn't match Hamiltonians' priorities.