Hamilton budget hike

Hamilton City Council asked all municipal departments and services to freeze budgets this year; but the city’s public works department wants to hike its spending by more than 6%.

That’s a jump of more than $11 million. One of the main reason for the increase is employee costs. But just this week, the city fired 29 public works employees for things like using city vehicles for personal use and claiming for full shifts when they only worked a few hours. City officials have considered not replacing all of those workers to save money. Counsellor Lloyd Ferguson said “if they are working an hour per day, we don’t need 31 of them.”