10/03/2011 06:12 EDT | Updated 12/03/2011 05:12 EST

Toronto Police Budget Cuts: Rob Ford Confident 10 Per Cent Can Be Saved


TORONTO - It appears that Toronto's police chief still has some work to do to find savings for the force's 2012 budget.

Chief Bill Blair met with Mayor Rob Ford on Monday to talk about next year's budget.

Ford came out of the meeting saying he is not budging on his demand that all departments find 10 per cent in savings.

But the budget that Blair will be presenting to his board on Wednesday asks for a 1.5 per cent increase.

Blair says he has actually found three per cent in reductions so far through a hiring freeze for 2012, and by reducing the number of management staff by 19, among other things.

Blair has said that to find 10 per cent savings, layoffs would be required and he would not recommend that.

Blair said he is continuing to work with the mayor and the city, "respectfully," to find more efficiencies.

Layoffs are "a political decision," Blair said, adding that so far Ford has not called for any.

"I have confidence in the chief and (the police) board that they can the efficiencies that I've asked every department in the city to find," Ford said.