FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 22, 2015
TORONTO TAXPAYERS COALITION STATEMENT ON PRIVATIZING GARBAGE COLLECTION EAST OF YONGE STREET
Toronto, ON – This morning, the Public Works Committee of Toronto City Council made the wrong move in deferring the city staff report on contracting out waste collection east of Yonge St. This report will be deferred until the fourth quarter of 2016. That is far too long for Mayor Tory’s administration to fulfill a clear campaign promise.
The Public Works Committee was set to debate the staff recommendation to maintain the current mix of public and private trash collection across the city. The Toronto Taxpayers Coalition disagrees with this report, and was looking forward to advocating for the many Toronto taxpayers and residents who have reached out to our Coalition saying they want this campaign promise fulfilled sooner.
“As a reminder to the Public Works Committee, and Toronto City Council, the top two placing mayoral candidates in the 2014 election – John Tory and Doug Ford – collectively earned 74% of the vote, and both supported privatization. There is a clear mandate from across Toronto, and specifically votes from Scarborough, for the privatization of waste collection,” states Toronto Taxpayer Coalition President, Andrea Micieli.
Mayor John Tory recently said he is committed to implementing a trash collection system for Toronto that is “the best service at the lowest possible cost.” It is clear that system requires privatization on the east end of the city to maximize both savings and service for all Toronto taxpayers and residents.
Toronto has saved $12-million through the privatization of trash collection west of Yonge St. The same level of service, if not improved level of service, has become the standard with a private contractor. In fact, a recent report by The Toronto Star shows a “stark contrast between the number of complaints for missed waste collection in Toronto’s east and west ends.” Missed garbage collection complaints have dropped by 10 percent in the west end, but increased by a whopping 29 percent in the east end – where privatization of waste collection is absent!
“This could have been an easy win for Mayor Tory had he moved to contract out more waste collection in the first months after he was elected. It is unfortunate this administration is delaying a campaign promise to east end taxpayers and the voters of Scarborough” states Toronto Taxpayer Coalition President Andrea Micieli.
Further, with the city’s contracts with inside and outside workers expiring at the end of this year, we are very concerned with how the absence of resolve on privatizing waste collection will affect Mayor Tory’s negotiations with labour leaders. The Toronto Taxpayers Coalition hopes this is not a sign of a kid-glove approach to these negotiations that could produce hundreds of millions in savings for Toronto taxpayers.