Skip to content. Accessibility info.

News Archives

Media Room

News Release

Kelly Asks Minister to State Province's Intentions

(Tuesday, May 13/2003)-- Mayor Peter Kelly today called on Municipal Relations Minister Peter Christie to clarify whether the Hamm government intends to cut funding to the municipalities or to further download costs to property owners in Nova Scotia in the near future.

Mayor Kelly said the Province recently advised the Union of Nova Scotia Municipalities (UNSM) that there will be no changes in the municipal funding program for the 2004/2005 fiscal year, but the government's commitment does not extend beyond that time.

In addition, it informed municipalities that the Nova Scotia Power property taxation sharing agreement announced last year may not extend beyond the current 2003-2004 fiscal year, including the commitment to freeze municipalities at their 2001/2002 grant level.

A letter from Municipal Relations Minister Peter Christie to Councillor Don Zwicker, President of the UNSM, stated " While notification is not required under the MGA (Municipal Government Act), this letter serves in part to remind the UNSM that this commitment does not necessarily extend beyond the current fiscal year (2003/04.)"

Mayor Kelly said it is essential that these matters be clarified prior to the upcoming provincial election, so the voters of Nova Scotia know exactly what the Hamm government intends to do in the area of municipal funding, and the likelihood of further Provincial downloading on the property taxpayer.

More than a year ago, the Province attempted to amend the Municipal Equalization Fund to enable it to take property tax dollars from the more financially-stable municipalities, such as HRM, and distribute them on a formula basis to other municipalities throughout Nova Scotia.

It later backed off in light of strong opposition by HRM and some other municipalities.

"It's always worrisome when the Province starts giving municipalities retroactive notice about how long funding programs may last. I believe the Hamm government owes it to Nova Scotians to tell them exactly what it plans to do regarding municipal funding, because we're all talking about the same taxpayer--and, there is only one taxpayer," he said.

Mayor Kelly said HRM representatives going to a UNSM workshop in Cape Breton later this week intend to press Municipal Relations Minister Christie to clarify the Province's intentions on municipal funding in front of the municipal delegates.


Mayor Peter Kelly
(902) 490-4010

Above content last modified Thursday, November 02, 2023 at 11:40am.