Only the Green Party of Canada is committed to working with the provinces to ensure that cities have independence in decision-making and receive a greater share of overall tax revenues. When Canada was founded 150 years ago, cities hadn’t emerged, and the founding fathers of Confederation deemed municipalities to be creatures of their provinces. Still today, provincial governments can and do overturn decisions made by municipal governments, decisions that were based on years of civic planning.
Today, Canadian cities receive only 10% of all taxes collected by all levels of government. As a result, they have to go cap in hand every year to provincial and federal governments begging for funding. What they mostly receive is short-term funding, which prevents cities from implementing long-range plans for better transit and more affordable housing. What they need instead is a greater share of the taxes currently being collected, and/or new sources of revenue so that they can fulfill the many responsibilities that they are asked to take on.
The Green Party is the only federal party that supports cities gaining status as “charter cities”, which ensures that they have the funding and the decision-making power that they need to thrive.
For details on why cities need charter status, and the constitutional pathway to making it happen, visit www.chartercitytoronto.ca.
The Green Party of Canada has become the first political party to publicly endorse Charter City status for Canadian municipalities. Green party leader Elizabeth May made the announcement at a news conference on July 19, 2019 in Toronto.