Ontario Supporting Municipalities and School Boards to Protect Front Line ServicesPublished on September 26, 2019
39 municipalities and three school boards to conduct independent, financial reviews
MISSISSAUGA — Thanks to the province's Audit and Accountability Fund, all 39 municipalities and three school boards eligible for funding will be conducting independent reviews to find efficiencies, save taxpayer dollars and focus spending on vital programs and services that Ontarians rely on every day.
"Our government is working hard to build a foundation for our long-term prosperity and to achieve that it will be essential to work cooperatively with our municipal and education partners," said Peter Bethlenfalvy, President of the Treasury Board. "That's why we established the Audit and Accountability Fund to give our partners the tools they need to conduct reviews of their books. I commend these municipalities and school boards for doing their part to build smarter government while making sure vital programs and services will be there when people need them."
"We committed to find four cents in savings for every dollar the province spends by doing things smarter, modernizing services, and reducing administrative costs," said Rudy Cuzzetto, MPP for Mississauga-Lakeshore and Parliamentary Assistant (Internal Audit) to the President of the Treasury Board. "But the fact is, we can't do it alone. Over 90% of the provincial budget is transfer payments. We need our partners to work with us to help bring Ontario back to fiscal health and sustainability."
In May 2019, the government established the Audit and Accountability Fund for large urban municipalities and district school boards. The fund provided access of up to $8.15 million so school board and municipalities could conduct focused reviews of their programs and services.
Independent focused reviews can help improve outcomes and value for Ontarians by:
- Modernizing services and better utilizing digital and shared service models;
- Finding better ways of governance; and,
- Redirecting funding to those that need it most.
"The City of Guelph is pleased to be working with our provincial counterparts to conduct an independent review of spending through the Government of Ontario's Audit and Accountability Fund," said Cam Guthrie, Mayor of Guelph. "We appreciate the support of another level of government in partnering with municipalities to find efficiencies that can ultimately save taxpayers dollars and improve program and service delivery."
Ontario's government is fulfilling its commitment to respect taxpayer dollars and spend smarter by cutting waste, leveraging new technologies and removing duplication and inefficiency from government.
- In Ontario, over 90 per cent of provincial spending goes towards funding school boards, hospitals, municipalities and other outside organizations.
- The following 39 municipalities are expected to receive funding to complete focused reviews: Ajax, Barrie, Brampton, Brantford, Burlington, Cambridge, Clarington, Durham Region, Greater Sudbury, Guelph, Halton Region, Hamilton, Kingston, Kitchener, London, Markham, Milton, Mississauga, Newmarket, Niagara Falls, Niagara Region, Oakville, Oshawa, Ottawa, Peel Region, Peterborough, Pickering, Richmond Hill, Sarnia, Sault Ste. Marie, St. Catharines, Thunder Bay, Toronto, Vaughan, Waterloo, Waterloo Region, Whitby, Windsor, and York Region.
- The following three school boards are expected to receive funding to complete focused reviews: Catholic District School Board of Eastern Ontario, Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic District School Board, and Trillium Lakelands District School Board.
- 34 municipal and two school board focused reviews are expected to be undertaken in 2019 with final reports delivered by December 31, 2019. One school board and the municipalities of Ajax, Halton Region, Milton, Mississauga and Whitby will deliver their final reports by January 31, 2020.
Office of Rudy Cuzzetto, MPP