I saw all of the Operating Budget and Capital Budget stories in the Star and had a great idea.
I just figured out not only how to eliminate Windsor's budgetary deficit but to provide all the money we need for infrastructure spending on roads and sewers and other important community services such as the Buskers Festival.
The Globe and Mail reported that "new government figures show Alberta is amassing a record $8.7-billion budget surplus" and that Premier Klein is preparing "to tour Eastern Canada to promote how his wealthy province is a "sharing and caring" place."
Now that is a nice surplus. I recalled that in August, the Ontario Chamber of Commerce wrote that "Ontario’s position, in terms of relative competitiveness and personal income levels relative to the rest of Canada, is at risk. Ontario will almost certainly fall below the Canadian average in income per capita within the next few years, reducing Ontario to "have-not" status." It is predicted that we will arrive at this position by about 2010 unless changes are made to the system of transfer payments.
Obviously, the other Provinces believe that Alberta should share the "windfall" they are receiving due to the price of oil sky-rocketing while the Premier reminds people that Alberta made sacrifices in the past when it had a $22 billion deficit. So fair's fair!
I cannot figure out which side is right or wrong on this matter but in my view of the situation, it does not matter. I believe that our Mayor is making a fundamental error by going after Ottawa and Queen's Park only for more money for Windsor. Instead, he should be focusing on Alberta and should be demanding that we get our fair split of their surplus.
I am sure that you are wondering how I could possibly make this suggestion. After all, we are a community in Ontario, not Alberta. My statement is very logical IF you understand the oil industry where I was employed as a lawyer by one of the biggest companies for about a dozen years.
Alberta does not really earn royalties by the production of oil. Who would want that black, gooey mess anyway. Oh sure it gets its money from crude oil but it is only because that "black gold" can be refined into transportation products such as gasoline, diesel, motor oil and grease that it has any value. In other words, the more vehicles there are and the bigger they get, then more and more crude must be refined with royalties increasing with increased gas guzzling.
I am sure that you can figure out where I am headed. Windsor is the "Automotive Capital of Canada." If it were not for us producing all of those vehicles over the years and parts for vehicles assembled elsewhere, no one would buy crude from Alberta. Why the residents there would be living in poverty! If it were not for Windsor, Ralph Klein could not afford to do his Eastern Canda jaunt.
Alberta owes Windsor and owes us big time! Windsor deserves a piece of that surplus because we are responsible for them having one in the first place!
I am not an Economist and it would probably take a team of them years to figure out what the proper formula should be for a proper split. So how about if we just ask for a straight ten percent. That's almost $900 million that should flow into Windsor's coffers!
It is not all that unusual...after all Ottawa shares million of dollars with Windsor under a new gasoline tax revenue-sharing deal for infrastructure projects based on a formula involving gasoline taxes.
Premier Klein must have been thinking of Windsor subconsciously when he named his Province as "sharing and caring." After all Windsor coined the phrase the "cardiac caring
community." Our former Mayor called Windsor "the most caring community in Canada.
" Herb Gray said Windsor is "a wonderful caring and sharing community
Makes sense to me...Mayor and Council, be my guest and use this idea as you see fit.
[And no, I have NOT been drinking too much holiday cheer. It is meant to be a joke]