No deputy mayor next election

·2 min read

There will no longer be a deputy mayor in Adelaide Metcalfe after next October’s municpal election.

The current council made that decision unanimously at its Nov. 15 meeting. Instead of the current makeup of a mayor, deputy mayor and three councilors, voters will choose a mayor and four councilors chosen at large.

At the last council meeting, clerk and manager of legislative services Michael Barnier was concerned about being able to pass such a rule in time for the Jan. 1 deadline, But after some investigation, he discovered a public consultation period was not necessary and council could choose the form its five representatives would take on its own.

The elimination of the deputy mayor position would save approximately $1,700 per year, according to the report. But that is not taking into account that council renumeration is likely to go up after a staff report on representative pay comes soon.

The deputy mayor position now pays $10,200. Councilors get $8,500, and the mayor gets $16,000.

Current Deputy Mayor Mary Ann Hendrikx voted for the change along with the rest of council.

She also made herself heard at this meeting when it came to the big cut to the Township’s share of the Ontario Municipal Partnership Fund (OMPF).

Hendirkx said it seems the fund has lost its original purpose of helping northern and rural Ontario communities.

Funding went down another 15 percent for Adelaide Metcalfe to $370,300 in 2022 from $435,600 in 2021. The Township’s first grant from the fund in 2013 saw it get over $1.68 million.

“You nailed it. It does seem that the new funding formula is rewarding places that are growing and not so much places that are sustained in its current assessment,” responded CAO Morgan Calvert.

That 78 percent decrease since 2013 was show to be equal to a 17.5 percent raise in tax rates, if $75,000 on the annual budget was calcualted as a one percent tax rate increase.

“If OMPF’s intent is really to support rural Ontario, it’s absolutely not doing that and we need to make sure that administrative finance and the Province is aware that it is actually hurting rural Ontario,” said Calvert.

Chris Gareau, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Middlesex Banner

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