Elections

Do you support the use of participatory budgeting to allow ward residents to propose and vote on local capital projects?

Responses to the question: "Do you support the use of participatory budgeting to allow ward residents to propose and vote on local capital projects?"

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48 Candidate Responses (top)

Mayor
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Baldasaro, Michael Yes
Butt, Ejaz Yes Yes the public must be engaged
Eisenberger, Fred Yes
Lavigne, Crystal Yes Absolutely! however, make sure that the resident's are not just a select few.
McHattie, Brian Yes I’m proud to have brought Participatory Budgeting to Ward 1 several years ago, and just as pleased to have my fellow Councillor Jason Farr adopt the process in Ward 2. I would like to see Participatory Budgeting go city-wide.
Pattison, Michael A. Yes This is the foundation of my very platform. I want to see more power given back to the wards. We have the opportunity over the next four years to almost double down on aging infrastructure, opportunities and payments.

This is my plan: First we look at our city’s tax bas. We can pay for all essential services, maintenance, interest payments and departments that it takes to run this city, defining and making efficiency adjustments along the way. Then we look at how much of our tax base we have remaining for all non-essential services.

Every resident in every ward would have the right to rank from number 1 (most important) all the way down the line until every service has been ranked.
While we are collecting all such data and making the cost saving changes to any service and/or departments, all remaining taxes would be proportionately divided to each ward as per their wards overall tax collection with one exception: our downtown would receive an extra percentage point to allow us to keep the vibrancy of our downtown on the upswing. This is not to favour the downtown but to make our downtown a thriving entity as this is truly the indicator of the vibrancy of Hamilton's business community and an issue all potential incoming businesses will assess.

I want to see all urban, suburban and rural wards flourish. This can and will happen when we can pay for principle projects dedicated to each ward out of our essential services city budget then take the ward budget and use it in conjunction with each project to ensure the longest lasting, energy efficient, culturally enhancing, most effective operating and maintenance schedules.

Any taxation left over would be put into a citywide trust, accumulating interest that is earmarked for the ward it comes from. Any interest gained on said monies would be put towards debt reduction for our city. The earmarked portion would be saved until a common or bigger project can be planned, vetted and brought to fruition. This allocated money can and should be made available every year to each ward but does not have to be spent. Once again the savings are grouped together bankrolling our interest with an annual return to each ward, and the whole procedure starts again.

We have to be particularly cognizant of the potential benefits our economy is in line for with the Pan AM Games and the Junos right around the corner. It is a basic tenet of good business: when times are good save – always be prepared.
Ward 01
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Allen, Jason Yes Yes, and will maintain the current Participatory Budget process in Ward 1, while working to implement any changes brought forth by the Participatory Budget Advisory Committee (PBAC).
Greco, Tony Yes Yes. I definitely support this. I know how important citizen involvement is when making decisions that will affect us all. As Councillor, I will create a Ward 1 Community Council which will be consulted, and have input on a wide range of decision making, including local capital projects and spending priorities.
Johnson, Aidan Yes Yes. I have served on Ward 1’s Participatory Budget committee, and all of its sub-committees. I would work to deepen the consultation process to determine how we should spend the ward’s $1.5 million budget.
Rosen, Ira Yes Under the leadership of our present Councillor Ward 1 was the first to adopt this process and over the years the system has grown in popularity however the present system still needs to be more transparent. Any local resident who wants to assist with this process must be allowed the opportunity to participate to ensure that it does not appear to be only a special interest group.
Shaw, Sandy Yes Yes, Ward One has had a proud history of active involvement in the participatory budgeting process.  Residents have had their say and have advocated for many worthwhile projects and I plan to continue to support the process and listen to the residents.
Ward 02
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Farr, Jason Yes Yes, 2 million worth of examples of my support to date and more to come with Councils support. We will make PBW2 better and we will strive to get greater involvement where the "P" is concerned.
Heaton, Kristina Maybe All residents should be notified as to what is being put forward and should be allowed to rate local capital projects as to their feasibility. But currently with the dust settling from this past couple of years of construction from the GO Station to the new Stadium, I will be looking at the financial picture as soon as Council sits.
Wallis, Terri Yes
Ward 03
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Agostino, Ralph Yes Yes; At anytime it promotes residents to be involved in how our tax dollars are being spent it’s always a good project.
DiMillo, Mark Yes I support participatory budgeting. The ward 2 Councillor did a good job managing the same in his ward and I heard positive feedback and encouragement from ward 3 residents to do the same. Something to look forward to in ward 3.
Green, Matthew Yes I fully intend to introduce Participatory Budgeting supported by our neighbourhood hubs and informed and led by the neighbourhood action strategies.
Mejia, Victor Maybe agree to point its true residents should have some say its their neigerhood.
Omazic, Drina Yes Yes. I support all initiatives that involve, promote and encourage community engagement and the participation of residents.
Simmons, Tim Yes Yes, but not in the same vain as has been done in the past. There needs to be a far more equitable approach to this, otherwise the people who are always politically engaged (those who are not poor and disaffected) get the lion's share of the goodies.

First, I would not make this an annual event. In year one, I would combine the area rating funds for the four years. So if the ward was getting $2 million dollars annually the discussion would be about how to use $8 million dollars over 4 years. This will prevent all the money going to one-off projects. Our capital projects needs to have continuity in order to bring real and lasting transformation to our neighbourhoods.

Second, before even discussing what projects people want there would be a process to create guiding principles (i.e. equity matters, children matter, public spaces matter), and then from those principles a four year strategic direction/goal.

Third, then there can be a discussion on what projects fit the guiding principles and have continuity with the strategic directions.
Ward 04
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Merulla, Sam Maybe I support a participatory budget process upon eliminating the 2 billion dollar hard infrastructure deficit. Until then, my focus will be the elimination of that deficit.
Moreau, Lorna Yes
Ward 05
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Brown, David Maybe One of the responsibilities of a City Councillor to their constituents is to communicate and consult their electorate regularly. If this doesn't happen then it is time to replace your Councillor.
Storm, Larry Yes For city owned/city run projects we should always have the ability to through whatever we can contribute to a project. As I mentioned earlier, this isn't council's city, this is our city! We have an annual budget in the hundreds of millions of dollars. If more people were giving their input in budgeting and capital projects there would be less crony ism, more accountability, transparency and hopefully more ownership of our city.
Ward 06
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Rodrigues, Dan Yes 100%. One of the first initiatives that I will be working on once elected, is the creation of a Ward Community Council. Part of the Terms of Reference of this Community Council will be to review the budget and provide feedback on both Capital and Operational budget items.
Ward 07
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Beck, Keith Yes I do support participatory budgeting and implementing it for ward 7 is a platform issue for me.
Burghall, Greg Yes As I mentioned in the question about City Hall being more accessible, yes. This is a great idea and shows how innovative and creative our residents are.
Ward 08
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Czerniga, Joshua Peter Yes
Ward 09
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Conley, Doug No Voting should be done by the elected officials; however, input from the public is always appreciated.
Galindo, Cam Yes Yes. Participatory budgeting allows ward residents to have a stronger voice when it comes to the decision making process. At the end of the day, its all about including residents in making decisions that affect them.
Marrone, Tone Yes the publics voice and concern is always needed......
McMullen, Geraldine    Yes Yes, citizen engagement is key to vibrant, sustainable communities. Only through consultation with citizens will we have wards all across the City that work for the people who live in the communities within their boundaries.
Robbins, Marie Yes In principal, participatory budgeting is a great initiative which has had some remarkable successes, particularly in Brazil. There is something that we can learn from this and it’s clear that some of the best initiatives are grassroots and citizen-driven. In practice, participatory budgeting must be done in a way that is as accessible and legitimate to all residents as any other municipal vote.

I’ve been following some of the initiatives for participatory budgeting coming up through civil society and my biggest concern is that in its current form in Hamilton, the process effectively just gives an extra vote to the small minority who have the spare time to attend privately organized meetings. The process is also conducted with a level of transparency that is far inferior to any other type of election of referendum in Canada and with far lower levels of participation than even municipal elections, which already have a depressingly low voter turnout.

Since participatory budgeting is supposed to be about deepening citizen engagement, it needs to be conducted in a way that is at least as open and accessible to the public as a municipal election. With this in mind, I am in favour of including budget items of a critical mass as a part of the city’s electoral process as a way of making this process work. Perhaps there could be participatory budgeting items on part of the ballot during municipal elections? It will certainly require further study, and there is a lot of room for improvement, but I am supportive of finding a way to make this work.
Rosser, Christopher Yes I support the idea of participatory budgeting. I like the idea of more communication with the constituents.
Rukavina, Frank Yes I would support the use of participatory budgeting.
Ward 10
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
DiFalco, Teresa Yes Yes, and have made that part of my platform.
Pearson, Maria Yes I support participatory budgeting, subject to the level of risk management attached to the local capital projects.
Ward 12
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Bryson, K. Grace Yes Yes to participatory budgeting for each ward. This ensures that development is in tune to the residents and business.
Ferguson, Lloyd Maybe We do not have a area rating capital account in Ancaster.
Iachelli, John F.F.   Yes Yes, I support participatory budgeting to allow ward residents to propose and vote on local capital projects. As tax payers we should have a say. And live with the result is we don't take that opportunity.
Nicholl, Anthony Maybe Maybe. Residents should have their say with regards to local capital projects. I would listen to their concerns and be their voice in council.
Ward 13
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Norton, Kevin No I want all my ward's constituents to bring to my attention any and all local projects they want me to propose. I am also a large supporter of democracy in action, however the cost of implementing a vote on every local issue can end up costing more than the project they wish to see realized. As a representative and civil servant I want to be able to fight on behalf of the people I represent to make their vision of Hamilton a reality.
Risdale, Marc Rhéal Yes Yes. Dundas has a long history of community consultation through our Community Council and I see participatory budgeting as a natural extension of our strong civic engagement.
Scime, Danya Yes
Vanderbeek, Arlene Yes Yes. Dundas residents should have a voice in the ranking of capital projects.
Yull, Toby Yes
Ward 14
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Knowles, Steven Yes Yes. More input the better!
Stewart, Scott Maybe I have a concern with Participatory Budgeting in the sense that once elected as Councillor, one will receive input from various people, groups and community councils to ensure the elected representative has those specific Ward interests in mind. My take is that there is already a poor budget process that slices/allocates amounts for more discretionary use within a Ward (by Councillors) creating less effective overall use of the revenue side of the City budget. If Council pursued, for example, to allocate say $1 million to each Ward for use under the Participatory Budgeting process, then I will assess that move in relation to the overall budget approach. I will try to extract saving on the cost side of the budget in general and perhaps directly as an offset to my example of $1 million per ward.

Response Summary (top)

Brief ResponseCount% of Total
Yes3981.3%
No24.2%
Maybe714.6%

39 Candidates Have Not Responded (top)

Mayor
Clancy, Mike
Clark, Brad
Francis, Warrand
Iamonico, Nick
Ryerson, Phil
Tavares, Ricky
Ward 01
Lewis, Brian
Ward 02
Dallas, Ed
Henry, Ryan
Vail, John
Ward 03
Anastasiou, Maria
Assadourian, Bob
Gibson, Sean
Hess, Jol
John, Eva
Kelly, Brian
Millette, Byron Wayne
Pinho, Carlos
Szajkowski, Bernie
Ward 04
Laurie, John
Whalen, Tina
Ward 05
Collins, Chad
Rusich, George
Ward 06
Jackson, Tom
Olynchuk, Brad
Ward 07
Duvall, Scott
Ward 08
Whitehead, Terry
Ward 09
Austin, Lee
Fiorentino, Nancy
Ward 10
Yachetti, Luana
Ward 11
Johnson, Brenda
Rigitano, Vincenzo
Ward 13
Coull, Mark
Court, Rick
Mitchell, Pamela
Urquhart, Christeen
Ward 14
Pasuta, Robert
Ward 15
Bos, Neil
Partridge, Judi