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bornagainbiking
Oct 24, 2009, 10:48 AM
Duh, Are we just thick, if we continue to vote for the non-ruling party (losers), we will not have a strong voice at the table let alone in the room. The adults sit at the big table and the others off to the side. hard to hear, away over there.
Sorry but this has gone on since the begginning of politics. It is basic human nature. People tend to listen to the ones closer to them or like-minded.
So no matter what your politcal stripes, that party when in power did or will do the same. So to whine about it is futile or just plain sour grapes. Boo Hoo.
Easy solution: if you want some dough vote for a voice that will be heard. Hamilton and it's long time loyalty to the NDP has minimal return on your voting dollar, or as many I know bother to vote at all.:shrug: :shrug:


Federal cash tilts to Tory ridings
TheSpec.com - Local - Federal cash tilts to Tory ridings

Meredith Macleod
The Hamilton Spectator

(Oct 24, 2009)
Local Conservative ridings have received $1.1 million or 89 per cent more in federal recreation stimulus funding than ridings held by opposition members.

According to Recreational Infrastructure Canada Program data, the three federal ridings held by Conservatives (Niagara West-Glanbrook, Burlington and Ancaster-Dundas-Flamborough-Westdale) have received an average of $2.4 million to build, repair or expand arenas, sports fields, community centres and pools.

The Hamilton ridings held by the NDP (Hamilton East-Stoney Creek, Hamilton Mountain and Hamilton Centre) received an average of $1.3 million.

Those findings amplify a pattern found across the province, says Gerard Kennedy, Liberal infrastructure critic.

Kennedy says the Tory government spent 34 per cent more for recreational facilities in its own Ontario ridings than in those held by the opposition parties.

The disparity -- $2.1 million on average per Tory riding versus $1.5 million for other ridings -- adds up to 199 more projects and $26.7 million extra in funds for Prime Minister Stephen Harper's MPs.

But Conservative MP Mike Wallace, whose Burlington riding was the biggest local funding winner at close to $2.5 million, says allocations had nothing to do with party politics.

"All these projects had to be approved by the Liberal provincial government," Wallace said.

"You'd be hard-pressed to find the provincial Liberals doing things to help the federal Conservatives," Wallace said, noting projects were approved if they met the deadline of completion by 2011 and fit the criteria of the program.

Kennedy says the funding has little relationship to unemployment rates, even though the funding is targeted at job creation.

Of course, it's also highly visible to voters and part of a $47-billion spending spree meant to launch the country out of a global recession.

"They said the money would be targeted to families and communities in need," Kennedy, MP for Toronto's Parkdale-High Park, told The Spectator. "They didn't say it was about persuading people to vote Conservative or keep voting Conservative."

The recreational infrastructure program pledged $500 million nationwide, $191 million to Ontario.

Of the provincial portion, close to $106 million has gone to the Conservatives' 51 ridings, almost $57 million to the Liberals' 38 ridings and a little more than $28 million to the 17 NDP ridings.

Wayne Marston, NDP MP for Hamilton East-Stoney Creek, says the infrastructure money should be handed out on a per capita basis, similar to the gas tax fund.

"That removes the gamesmanship ... With every government I've ever seen in the history of Canada, there's been partisanship involved in handing out money."

Hamilton area ridings, on average, received $1.8 million for recreation upgrades, about $36,000 more than the provincial average.

Burlington was 24th on the list of 106 ridings according to dollars awarded. Hamilton Centre was the lowest local riding, at 91. Of the top 20 ridings, at least a dozen are held by Conservatives, including Diane Finley in Haldimand-Norfolk, which ranks 10th on the list.

But there are opposition ridings that rank high. The third and fourth are held by Liberals, for instance. Ottawa South, No. 3, is represented by David McGuinty, brother of Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty.

No. 1 is Kenora, held by Conservative Greg Rickford, which will get 35 projects worth almost $7 million.

Minister of Industry Tony Clement, responsible for the administration of the stimulus funding, will see $2.4 million for 28 projects land in his Parry Sound-Muskoka constituency, No. 2 on the total projects list.

The Prime Minister's Office said the Liberal criticism "paints an unfair picture."

GTA media officer Alan Sakach said in an e-mail yesterday Conservative ridings tend to be more suburban and rural and cover more area than those held by the opposition. "As a result, the demands for community recreational infrastructure improvements are expected to be greater among the former."

He said across Canada, opposition-held ridings received funding for fewer but more expensive projects for an average of $291,230. He said the average for Tory ridings was $223,652. Sakach said 28 projects in Conservative ridings received the maximum $1-million federal contribution, compared with 29 projects in Liberal and NDP ridings.

Kennedy said stimulus funding is too important to leave to politics.

mmacleod@thespec.com

905-526-3408

Where the money goes

Riding Party MP Amount Projects Rank*

Hamilton East-Stoney Creek NDP Wayne Marston $1.08m 3 76

Ancaster-Dundas-Flamborough-Westdale Con. David Sweet $2.43m 4 25

Niagara West-Glanbrook Con. Dean Allison $2.28m 12 28

Burlington Con. Mike Wallace $2.49m 6 24

Hamilton-Centre NDP David Christopherson $0.65m 2 91

Hamilton Mountain NDP Chris Charlton $2.07m 4 35

*Ranking among 106 Ontario federal ridings

mishap
Oct 24, 2009, 1:55 PM
It is basic human nature. People tend to listen to the ones closer to them or like-minded.
That's true. It's not necessarily favouritism. Any party comes in with its own idea of how the wealth should be "redistributed". When it's time to set up programs, and the criteria for those programs, which ridings are going to best fit the criteria? Probably the ones that are more philosophically aligned with the ruling party. It doesn't always have to be like that if the local rep knows how to "play ball," but partisan pride usually enters the picture.

I'd need to see some historical numbers, but I imagine it works like that with all parties.

adam
Oct 24, 2009, 5:15 PM
GTA media officer Alan Sakach said in an e-mail yesterday Conservative ridings tend to be more suburban and rural and cover more area than those held by the opposition. "As a result, the demands for community recreational infrastructure improvements are expected to be greater among the former."


His reasoning actually favours less funding for suburban and rural areas where there are fewer people. 3/5ths of Hamilton's population lives in the downtown riding. The current model suggests a person living in Westdale or downtown is less valuable than a person living in Flamborough, for example.

drpgq
Oct 25, 2009, 4:52 PM
I wonder if part of the reason the Mountain riding did way better than downtown is that the Mountain is liberal provincially, whereas downtown is NDP both federally and provincially.

SteelTown
Oct 25, 2009, 5:03 PM
Hamilton Centre covers a big chunk of the Mountain and it got funding for a new rec centre for Westmount, thank god. But it looks like Hamilton Centre got one of the least amount of money in Ontario 91 out of 106.

hamiltonguy
Nov 7, 2009, 6:36 PM
Actually its quite simple:

You can do more with less when your population density is greater.

Hasn't that been the urbanist's selling point for a while now?

adam
Nov 7, 2009, 8:01 PM
Are you suggesting that higher density areas should have lower taxes?

hamiltonguy
Nov 7, 2009, 9:15 PM
I'm suggesting that its not some nefarious patronage scheme.

Although I would suggest that (if area rating were to be removed), the average suburban resident would pay more tax as they have higher average incomes, buy more, and have higher value homes.