Jan 30, 2014

By Scott Walker

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Mayor Rob Ford was at the centre of another fractious day at city council.

Speaker Frances Nunziata threatened to eject the mayor from the council debate on the budget because he was interrupting councillors. At one point he told another councillor to shut up.

Ford later proposed motions that he said would eliminate $60-million in spending. But council rejected his motions. City staff had said either they weren’t feasible. His budget chief, Frank DiGiorgio, dismissed Ford’s motions as “grandstanding.” He says Ford proposes things he knows won’t be accepted so he can tell his followers he tried to bring in changes.

In the end, council approved a property tax increase of 2.23 per cent, which works out to an extra $68 for the average taxpayer. Ford claimed that, since council has stripped him of his powers, what he calls the “gravy train” is back. Deputy Mayor Norm Kelly took exception to that. He says this year’s increase is lower than the one Ford brought in last year.

Council resumes debate on the budget this morning.


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