A Letter to the Editor from Christian Provenzano

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letter to the editor

Letter to the Editor:

When I ran for Mayor in 2014, I committed to ensure that the city budgeted and spent responsibly. Every tax dollar is a public trust and to respect that trust and govern responsibly, we have to ensure that we budget properly and do not collect more than required to provide the services our community needs.  I have worked hard to meet this goal and I think this Council has accomplished a lot to ensure we are moving in a positive direction.

Here is what we have done:

·         A full city spending review;

·         Changed the budgeting process so that City Council has more time with the budget and its deliberations;

·         Substantially reduced the sewer surcharge;

·         Developed and approved a surplus policy;

·         Developed and approved a long – term tax policy;

·         Developed and approved an Community Improvement Plan (Industrial).

Here are the results:

·         We have reduced City spending;

·         We have minimized the levy increase year over year;

·         We have reduced the majority of the City’s tax rates;

·         We decreased the City impact on your PUC bill;

·         We are adjusting tax ratios to ensure tax fairness.

Here are the facts:

·         In 2015 the City’s total budgeted expenditures were 187 million (including DSSAB, Local and Levy Boards), in 2018 they were 179.5 million (7.5 million decrease);

·         In 2015 the municipality’s budgeted expenditures were 115.5 million, in 2018 they were 113.5 million (2 million decrease);

·         Tax rate increases directly related to the municipal budget totalled 6.05% over the entire term;

·         Tax rate increases for the term, in the aggregate, were below inflation and declined over the term, as follows:  2015 – 2.7%, 2016 – 1.39%, 2017 – 1.04%, 2018 – .92%;

·         The residential tax rate decreased almost 9% over the course of the Council term from .01679425 in 2014 to .01530325 (.01360325 without school board levy) in 2018;

·         Tax rates for Residential, Multi-Residential, Commercial Occupied, Office Buildings, Shopping Centres all decreased over the Council term;

·         The industrial tax rate increased in 2017 due to a major decrease in industrial assessment. It is important to note that a tax capping mechanism is in place to minimize the impact of a significant rate increase so that actual taxes paid are not proportionate to the actual rate increase.

Council has also taken action to support industrial properties. As mentioned, the long-term tax policy will help bring fairness to all tax classes. As well, we’ve introduced a Community Improvement Plan that will provide a tax break to industrial property owners who expand or take actions to increase the assessed value of their properties. I also believe that once Algoma exits CCAA protection, there will be substantial new investments made in the steel plant that will bring its assessment back up and help restore balance to the industrial classes.

This record is consistent with the commitments I made to you in 2014.  There is, no doubt, more to do.  We have to stay diligent and keep challenging ourselves and City staff to find savings and efficiencies.

I commit to continue to work for you and our community and ask for your support on October 22nd, 2018.

Sincerely,

Christian Provenzano

 

15 COMMENTS

  1. It is very disconcerting to hear mention of the “senior” designation in a manner that I do personally find degrading and demeaning.

    That level when I was at Algoma & Lake State Universities was not treated as though the person was in a diminished intellectual state.

    Though it has been an problem no doubt within every generation that is no justification for it definitely not in my mind.

    There are other designations that I would rather see not be common at all.

    In fact become completely history given the choice.

    Though money management, public works including administrative responsibilities and public relations are not minor issues, in my mind, I thought it best to focus on my _SENIOR _defence and assertion.

    • Thanks for your personal clarification, saying the person was in a diminished intellectual state works well for me.

      • Who do you think you are fooling ?
        Definitely not me !

        I wonder if my editing and addition will be published in due time?

        • No disrespect lady but you have me in stitches. I can

          Have a tequila and relax. Your long winded nonsensical comments have me in stitches. No disrespect lady but several writing classes might be in order.

          ;
          thelp but respond. As an old retired teacher, I have to say, it would be a terrific idea to invest is several writing classes

          • Alcohol is no excuse for your nonsense.

            Not in my mind.

            No wonder though it seems that you are having a hard time behaving yourself .

          • Should have read like this. Damn the keyboard.

            Have a tequila and relax. Your long winded nonsensical comments have me in stitches. No disrespect lady but several writing classes might be in order. Seriously.
            ;

    • Editing…..Though it has been a problem………not……Though it has been an problem

      In reply to the still harassing and abusive poster, I suggest you restrain yourself from further incivility and be appreciative with all due respect.

      Furthermore my arguments were not at all selfish or self-centred neither manipulation or other wrongful motive. Not at all without consideration for the many who seem to think they have no choice other than to just take it. I advocated on your behalf too not only myself.

      However many seem to have an awfully automatic disrespectful perspective toward senior ages by choice without a doubt in my mind.

      Not right at all as though brainwashed to think like that in this culture ?

      No excuse not in my mind .

      My communication as always is for no wrongful motive or improper purpose.

  2. What about local businesses, if our own city and utility companies and our own hospital outsources out of town, how can you keep locals employed, theres not even a mention of that and although it may not be the most important issue, its an important issue. Theres no reason to be outsourcing to out of town when there are local services right here in our own city.

  3. Lots of fluff…very little substance in what the mayor is trying to convince us of. He rules by crisis management…no long range planning. It is a shame our waterfront is ignored while money is still being spent on downtown. I guess he forgot to mention how long it takes to complete projects like Black Road and Bruce Street. Also…he failed to mention our crumbling roads.

  4. Christian. Your web page (last election) also stated that you wanted a transparent council, no closed door decisions. Yet that is all we have seen since you have become Mayor. You also forget to mention your other accomplishments, such as eliminating City run Day Care, closing the East end library, allowing the Fire Department to be gutted, and Senior Management taking pay raises in 2017 when Council voted on a 0% pay increase for Management. Seem as if you are talking out of both sides of your mouth. As Mayor you have always said that you are responsible for what happens at City hall. Well it is time to own up to all the bad things that happened while you were Mayor and not just what you think you can spin in your favour.

  5. Yet no new industries, a despicable site in the old general hospital site and empty land on the waterfront still after all these years and an plastic roof casino

    • Hospital – privately owned
      Casino – privately owned(formally provincially owned)
      You might as well complain about our 2 lane highway and our cold winter nights because your comment means nothing to the citizens of this city!

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