Ottawa should have the powers, accountability and resources to run its affairs as a mature level of government, a mayoral candidate said Monday.
Clive Doucet announced that if elected, he will establish a City of Ottawa Act that will give the city the authority to fulfill its responsibilities properly.
“We need a new deal for the City of Ottawa,” he said Monday. “We need a City of Ottawa Act like Toronto has an act.”
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In Toronto, the act has given the city powers to get green roofs, put development charges into transit and roads and the authority to levy growth taxes, Doucet said.
“Ottawa has limited discretion over its own expenditure and revenue decisions,” he added. “For the purposes of accountability and local autonomy, the city should have the authority and be required to set all of its tax rates.”
“We have to start governing our city as if we were a city, not a township. We have to do a better job of servicing it.”
The city needs a new attitude, he added. “We have to start believing in ourselves as a city.”
Doucet also said he would do more to promote the business sector, draw on the resources of the National Research Council, universities and community colleges, create a new R&D technology hub specializing in green urban infrastructure and strengthen the roles of economic development groups.
“The last week before the election, for us, is about getting people to understand the choices are not between the ‘O’Watsons,’ where you’re basically getting the same choice. They’re not very different. If we get people to understand that, they’ll vote for us.”
—mayoral candidate Clive Doucet