POLITICS

Toronto city council votes against endorsing new transit taxes or fees

05/10/2013 08:29 EDT | Updated 07/10/2013 05:12 EDT
TORONTO, Cananda - Toronto city council has decided not to endorse any new taxes or fees to pay for transit expansion in the Greater Toronto Area and Hamilton.

The vote late Thursday took about two hours and came after two days of debate.

Council had a chance to recommend to transit agency Metrolinx how to raise money for the $50-billion Big Move, but decided to reject a list of 13 taxes and fees, including highway tolls, congestion charges and a fuel tax.

At the same time, council voted to neither reject nor endorse development charges and a sales tax.

Mayor Rob Ford claimed victory after the vote, saying it saved taxpayers at least $1,000 per family and sent a message to the province.

Ford said the vote should show Premier Kathleen Wynne that it's better to find ways to save money and cut costs than to bring in new taxes.

“I’d advise her not to even talk about revenue tools anymore. Let’s get on finding efficiencies and save taxpayers money, instead of increasing taxes,” Ford said.

But Coun. Janet Davis says council has just passed the buck.

“We certainly haven’t made a clear statement and there’s an absolute lack of leadership here on the floor of council by a number of people. I think it’s sad,” she said.

(CFRB, 680News)