Sudbury council approves 'slush fund' changes
Posted: Dec 5, 2012 8:33 AM ET
Last Updated: Dec 5, 2012 11:12 AM ET
Once again, a vote at Sudbury city hall has pitted the city councillors against the mayor.
Marianne Matichuk was the lone vote against proposed changes to the $50,000 city councillors each have to spend in their wards each year.
Matichuk said she likes the new rules that restrict the amount councillors can spend in one place, but thinks city staff should have more control on how the Healthy Community Funds are spent.
"As far as I'm concerned, no matter how much work has been done, I still disagree with the premise of this policy,” she said.
However the 11 councillors at Tuesday night's meeting all voted to approve the new policy that does tighten up the rules on how the Healthy Community Funds are spent. In the past, critics have called the ward monies 'slush funds,' and have suggested they're illegal.
Although he voted in favour of the changes, Coun. Fabio Belli said he has concerns about the misspending of these ward funds. He said he believes problems arise when councillors choose to give money to certain community groups.
"When you give to one, you must give to others,” Belli said.
“So, that's one of my biggest concerns. I will not spend any money towards any grants or donations. Plain and simple."
Belli said he will only give his ward funds to parks, playgrounds, trails and other recreational infrastructure.
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