Comment 29968

By Head -> Desk (anonymous) | Posted April 06, 2009 at 12:43:26

So much wrong with your simplistic analysis.

1) Burlington can afford fewer staff because they don't have to provide social services. Hamilton provides services for the entire region. Our social service costs are mostly covered by the province (they'll soon cover all of it, and they send cash transfers to cover the shortfall in the meantime). So that money's not coming off the municipal tax base.

2) Burlington is a big suburb (tho starting to change - new mini-downtown), Hamilton is a city. E.g. Burlington has minimal transit but Hamilton has more full-service transit (still could be better). Cities have higher taxes than towns to run urban services but people save money on not needing cars so it's a lifestyle wash.

The problem today is Hamilton is a city that still behaves a lot like a suburb so it i) doesn't gain all the benefits of fully committing to an urban form but ii) still can't really compete with true suburbs like Burlington for the suburban form. So we've got the worst of both worlds.

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