November 29, 2013 – Today the 2014 Sam Katz budget was released and once again the Mayor has failed Winnipeggers. The 2014 Capital and Operating Budgets for the City of Winnipeg raises taxes, increases debt and reduces services. It is representative of the continued failure of Mayor Sam Katz to manage Winnipeg's finances.
This budget also increases property taxes. It adds, yet again, to the over $600.00 in increased taxes and fees a Winnipeg household has seen in the last four years while increasing the amount of debt our future generations will be responsible for paying.
Today's budget will decrease the services Winnipeggers need and deserve but does not directly state which services will be reduced, cut or completely taken away from Winnipeggers.
Mayor Sam Katz's budget also includes misleading pre-budget announcements for special projects which have been determined by the Mayor without any consultation. This budget has allocated money for suburban mega recreational centers instead of investing in our existing local community centers.
While today's budget does include funding for the Southwest Bus Rapid Transit, it does not include how The City of Winnipeg will pay for it and does not present accurate financial numbers. This opens the door to the potential of yet another Fire Hall / Police Station debacle.
In the coming days Councillor Orlikow will provide a further break down of both budgets. The difficulty for all Winnipeggers is that these documents must be assessed, analyzed and questioned within a two week time frame of release.
One thing is certain, with the release of today's 2014 Capital and Operating Budgets, Mayor Sam Katz has once again proven he is incapable of managing the finances of the City of Winnipeg.