A number of Ontario mayors were more than a little apprehensive last week when Doug Ford’s government announced they were undertaking a review of regional governments in a number of communities.
You may recall that the Mike Harris government got the amalgamation ball rolling in the 1990s amid promises of millions of dollars of tax savings and much better service delivery in the affected communities.
History shows that projections of tax savings were hugely exaggerated and there were so many complaints about service levels the government quietly abandoned any further attempts at these political shotgun weddings.
So, you can understand why taxpayers and politicians alike are wondering if Ford is taking Ontario into another round of amalgamations.
WATCH: Premier Ford releases list of ‘accomplishments’
Just how far is Ford willing to go?
Remember that he arbitrarily decided to slash the size of Toronto city council and he eliminated two regional chair positions, and that was right in the middle of the municipal election campaigns.
The mayor of one of the targeted communities felt confident that once the government sees how cost-effectively the municipalities are run, the government will maintain the status quo.
Don’t be too sure!
Ford has already shown us that he doesn’t let the facts get the way of implementing one of his ideological political plans.