MFOA's Open Letter to Premier Doug Ford
August 24, 2020
Dear Premier Ford,
I am writing on behalf of the Municipal Finance Officers' Association of Ontario (MFOA), and the municipalities it serves. MFOA’s membership includes key advisors to council on financial affairs and individuals responsible for handling the financial activities of municipalities. Our membership represents 99.6% of the population of the province.
MFOA would like to thank you and the Government of Ontario for your continued discussions with and support of Ontario municipalities. We appreciate your efforts to date regarding the negotiation of the Safe Restart Agreement, provincial matching of federal pandemic-related funding, deferral of municipal education property tax payments, and additional funding for social services, among other supports.
As discussed in MFOA’s presentation to the Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs on July 13, all municipalities have been affected by the pandemic. From modifications to service levels to capital plan deferrals to significant drops in revenue, impacts differ but no municipality has been immune from the effects of the current crisis.
In a policy environment that is moving and changing as rapidly as this, wide-spread and frequent engagement is required. Dialogue with respect to municipal issues in general, and finance in particular, needs to include all levels of government. Such dialogue is critical as we transition to some type of new normal and into the recovery phase.
Throughout the pandemic, we have seen how much can be achieved when municipalities actively share information with one another and work together with the provincial government. We look forward to the Province’s continued collaboration with municipal finance representatives and support for the vital services municipalities provide to Ontarians. Please contact MFOA Executive Director, Donna Herridge (email@example.com), should you wish to follow up on this letter.
Trevor Pinn, CPA, CA