City budget leaves parents, homebuyers feeling the pressure

Preliminary 2017 spending plan to cut daycare subsidies, raise property taxes

On January, while the city’s budget committee wrapped up deliberation on the 2017 spending plan, Arian Ferouzi and other caregivers were stressed and frustrated as they left the meeting.

Ferouzi, a 23-year-old East York mother of two boys under 6, said the budget cuts left her hanging.

“I just find it unfair that we already pay so much for childcare for both our boys, and have this new budget come up — it isn’t going to be easy,” she said.

A $4.1-million cut is expected from what is paid to TDSB schools annually to help facilitate daycares. If the funding is cut, parents will be expected to pay an extra $15–121 per child each month. Current fees are $1,649 for infants, $1,375 for 1 to 3-years-old, and $1,150 for 3 to 5-years-old.

Mayor John Tory’s proposed City Building Fund will also increase homeowners’ property taxes by two per cent every year for five years and an additional increase of 0.5 per cent per year for five years.

Najib Majidzadah, a Toronto sales representative for real estate company Remax, said the increase in property taxes will affect first time home buyers.

“I believe the hike on real estate per year will ultimately affect [first time] home buyers the most and will drive more people to move further into the suburbs,” Majidzadah said. “Having said that, it is good for the overall economy.”