Municipal News

Municipal News

The City of Calgary's General Manager of Transportation, resigned as a City employee last year under mysterious circumstances.

Merry Christmas

We were wrong

We Wish You A Merry Christmas

Is it the end of Savecalgary?

Homeowners are facing 12.5% tax increases over the next four years

Calgary is facing tough economic times.

Vote No Today

Vote #NOOOOO

Just Say No

Bidding for the 2026 Olympics is a risk that Calgary taxpayers just can’t afford to take. Billions in debt, property tax hikes, and working with an International Olympic Committee mired in scandal and corruption. Our city’s financial future depends on voting NO to these Olympics in this plebiscite. Make sure that you, your family, and your friends understand what’s at stake, and get out and vote NO!

Just say no to a risky Olympics that Calgary can’t afford.

 

Voting Information:

Election Day - Tuesday November 13th, 8am - 8pm.

You must vote at your local Voting Station. To find your assigned station, click here

 

Don’t let the YES side win by default - take the time to cast your vote and secure Calgary’s future by voting NO to the Olympics!

Save Clagary From The Olympics

turns out being a friend of Mayor Nenshi is a really, really good investment

release the numbers

Who Voted to Release The Olympics

Hosting an Olympics will fix everything!

AN OLYMPIC SIZED BILL!

What Garbage Service

Have you met City Hall's newest millionaires

Have you met City Hall's newest millionaires?

They're currently sitting on our City Council.

As Save Calgary has pointed out before, the City Council pension is one of the best perks of the job. In fact, some have likened it to the platinum pension plans that Alberta MLAs used to enjoy before taxpayers rose up in anger and nearly booted the government from office.

The Canadian Taxpayers Federation has released a new report into Calgary City Council pensions, and it shows that at least three of our Councillors are destined to become millionaires under the current plan. The CTF assessed what the total pension payout to the current City Councillors would be if they collected until age 85.

Which Councillors are in line for the million dollar payouts?

Ray Jones (Ward 10) - $1,250,704.00
Druh Farrell (Ward 7) - $1,259,863.00
Mayor Naheed Nenshi - $1,415,791.00

In each case, Councillors only contributed a fraction of what taxpayers did towards these lavish pensions.

In fact, on average, Councillors only put in $1 for every $5 put in by taxpayers.

The only exception is Councillor Jeromy Farkas (Ward 11) who opted out of the plan, citing its high cost to taxpayers.

This is completely unacceptable - especially as Calgary continues to struggle with high unemployment, business closures, and sluggish economy.

We don't actually know what the final cost will be for taxpayers, because periodically the City dumps in a bunch of extra taxpayer money into the pension plan to top it up. Millions of extra dollars have been paid into the City Council pension plan, with the costs going directly onto the backs of taxpayers in the form of higher property taxes, hiked up fees, larger surcharges, and bigger levies to the City.

However, the news gets worse when it comes to Mayor Nenshi.

He doesn't receive just one taxpayer-funded golden handshake - he gets two!

Because Mayor Nenshi is so highly paid - at a salary over $200,000 per year, he's one of Canada's highest paid mayors - he qualifies for the City of Calgary's "Supplementary Pension Plan for Elected Officials".

This second special pension plan is even more generous than the one Councillors receive - and both are funded nearly entirely by taxpayers.

The Mayor has suggested in previous public statements that the level of taxpayer funding for his pension - sorry, pensions - is pretty well standard for any pension plan.

That's just not the case.

First of all, how common is having two pension plans for a Mayor? Let's see what other cities do.

Brampton? No.
Edmonton? No.
Hamilton? No.
Mississauga? No.
Montreal? Non.
Ottawa? No.
Toronto? No.
Vancouver? No.
Winnipeg? No.

Also, for most pension plans, the ratio of funding is generally about 1:1 employer contribution per employee contribution - and that's if you're lucky enough to work for a company that offers a pension plan. In some really generous companies, that contribution ratio rises to 2:1.

But it's only in the taxpayer trough that is Calgary's City Hall that you see a ratio of $5 taxpayer dollars per $1 put in by a Councillor.

Calgary taxpayers can't afford to keep making our City Councillors millionaires.

When Save Calgary first raised the alarm on this issue last year, we started a petition demanding that City Council scrap the platinum pension plan.

Today, we're renewing our call and demanding that City Council do away with this overly generous taxpayer-funded perk.

Will you sign our petition and share this e-mail with your family, friends, and neighbours?

As Calgarians continue to struggle to find jobs, pay their bills, and make ends meet during these tough economic times, shouldn't our City Council at least take a break from putting our hard-earned tax dollars right into their pockets?

We'll keep pushing on this issue and how City Councillors respond - as a City Hall watchdog, that's our mission.

Sincerely,

 

Save Calgary

Report: Councillors Behaving Badly

Release The Report Now
Friend --
After years of trying to keep it under wraps, a heavily redacted copy of the City of Calgary's report into City Councillor Misconduct has been posted to the City's website.
The report provides some limited insight into the behavior of some Councillors who were on Council before the 2017 election.
In the opening paragraph of the report, the investigators stated that:
"The problems are sufficiently widespread to sustain a finding of systemic problems in the workplace. Since the problems are known to many in the workplace, all those working in the Council Office are affected by the environment. There are indications that these types of issues are not new."
Only one City Councillor - Evan Woolley (Ward 8) - agreed to let his name be revealed in the report. He indicated that he once "yelled" at a City Councillor staff, recognizing this wasn't appropriate.
Here is how this incident is reflected in the version of the report released by the City (the letter/number sequences in the redactions are the sections of the Privacy Act being cited by City to justify why the information is being kept hidden):
Sadly, this is the most informative section of the report.
The name of every other Councillor and their bad behavior is hidden behind a wall of redactions.
The City claims that these redactions are in place to protect the identity of the whistleblowers. However, this is pretty clearly a smokescreen to keep the names of those councilors who engaged in inappropriate behavior secret - shielding them from real accountability and transparency.
The version of the report released by the City contains virtually no useful information.
Here, for example, is a section on the findings of abuse committed by members of Council:
And here, for example, is a section of the conclusions from the report about the bad behavior of City Councillors:
This is completely unacceptable.
When asked about the fact that no Councillors faced sanctions because of their misconduct - something which would not be the case in any large business, Mayor Nenshi brushed off the incidents, saying:
"I'm not so sure they got away with it if I would use that term, because certainly, you know, we went through training for all of council."
Voters have a right to know which City Councillors engaged in misconduct and what their misconduct was.
We call on all Councillors to agree to have their sections of the report released, and to provide details on the incidents.
The following Councillors who currently sit on City Council were also in office at the time this investigation was performed and the report was drafted:
Save Calgary has also been fighting to get this report released, we've been told that our copy of the report will be available to us on June 28th. We'll see if the City is providing any additional information on the identities of those Councillors who engaged in misconduct, and what their misconduct was.
In the meantime, contact your Councillor and demand that they agree to have their information in the report made public.
Calgarians demand real accountability - what the City has provided so far doesn't come close to meeting that standard.
Sincerely,
Save Calgary
PS. Summer may be here in Calgary, but Save Calgary isn't taking a vacation - we'll keep working to hold City Hall to account and to stand up for Calgary taxpayers. If you support our work, please consider donating $135, $75, or $45 to help us with our work!