Key Issues 

Gridlock & Transit/Transportation

The Mayors of large urban areas in Ontario are united on the need for new revenue to invest in roads and transit.

  • Families and businesses agree: gridlock is one of the most important issues facing our communities today.
  • It’s costing us jobs, investment, and wasting our precious time stuck in traffic.
  • Whatever has been done is not enough, and the results are clear: overloaded subway and busses, and traffic jammed highways.
  • We need it fixed. And that means we need the money to fix it.
  • We believe its time to have a frank conversation about new revenue tools, and for our provincial leaders to commit to investing in breaking gridlock.
  • It’s time to take a serious look at raising new revenue.

We need a new Founding Deal to fund transit and improved transportation all across Ontario.

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Motions of LUMCO:

Passed on February 20, 2015

“Whereas the Mayors of the large urban cities in Ontario strongly support new revenue tools that are fair and reasonable to help end gridlock and to move people and goods in Ontario.
Whereas we understand that tough decisions need to be made in order to keep goods, services and people moving; including funding the Move Ontario ($29 Billion) plan and
Therefore LUMCO requests that the Province in its 2015 Budget address the funding issue and consult with our caucus in order to move our shared transit agenda forward.”

Additional Motions

 Passed on February 7, 2014:

“Whereas the Mayors of the large urban cities in Ontario do support new revenue tools that are fair and reasonable to help end gridlock in Ontario. It is likely a number of revenue tools will be needed to address gridlock, sharing the burden with all those with a stake in the solution.

Therefore LUMCO urges the Province to recognize the transportation Infrastructure crisis across the Province and allocate the necessary capital expenditures to enable the Province to keep goods, services and people moving, and LUMCO urges the Province to seek the support of the Federal Government for this vital infrastructure.”


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Emergency Services Costs 

The Emergency Services Steering Committee (ESSC) is a joint committee of the municipalities of the Large Urban Mayors Caucus of Ontario (LUMCO), the Mayors and Regional Chairs of Ontario (MARCO), and the Ontario Association of Police Services Boards (OAPSB). The ESSC was established in November 2005 to coordinate activities related to labour cost containment in emergency services (police, fire and emergency medical services/EMS).

It is the position of the ESSC, on behalf of MARCO/LUMCO municipal employers, that these cost increases are not sustainable in the long term and that these costs are being driven higher as a consequence of arbitration awards that have not fully considered or properly accounted for the current Ontario and local economies or the taxpayers’ ability to pay, and the influence of such awards on negotiated settlements.

Municipalities recognize that emergency services professionals work in dangerous settings and should be highly respected. However, labour costs and increases within the emergency services sector continue to rise at rates that are exceeding those in other sectors and include higher wage increases, better benefits and retirement plans. Such increases are not being enjoyed by most taxpayers. In fact, many taxpayers are underemployed or facing layoffs. In

addition, the disproportionate increase of costs in the emergency services sector is adding to the eroding ability of municipalities to fund key projects and essential programs. It is the Employer’s position that the generous emergency services settlements will, at some point, be met with public backlash.

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Job Creation 

Jobs for Ontarians is a key pressing issue in our Province. Ontario’s big city Mayors believe that although all levels of government are working to create jobs and grow the economy, too often this is done in isolation. We are in need of a diverse and robust jobs strategy for Ontario. We need leadership at all levels to commit to coming together to develop this critical strategy.

As Mayors we are calling on our partners in the Provincial and Federal Governments to work with city leaders to develop a diverse and robust Jobs Strategy for Ontario, which would include actions to address:

  1. Labour Market Reform: skills training/apprenticeship programs; immigration reform;
  2. expansion of international trade and foreign direct investment through a new, coordinated trade agenda shared by Federal, Provincial and Municipal governments;
  3. infrastructure investment that targets the problems that hold our economy back, particularly aging transportation infrastructure and the under provision of public transit

This strategy will result in job creation and growth in the local, provincial and national economy.  A true strategy to restore economic strength requires a focus on growing Ontario’s businesses, by strengthening the labour force, attracting new investment, and investing in the infrastructure for growth.  Economic expansion, in addition to spending restraint, will result in fiscal health for all levels of government.

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Affordable Housing 

Affordable housing is a national issue and Ontario Big city Mayors are calling on provincial and federal leaders to upload the costs of social housing to the Province.

  • The cost of social housing is felt by cities throughout Ontario. 
  • The province needs to specifically address the need for funding for more affordable housing

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