Friday, August 22, 2008

Timmins wants a break on fuel costs

Timmins city councillor Pat Bamford is going on the premise that you’ll never know unless you ask.
City council has endorsed Bamford’s idea of approaching the higher levels of government for some financial assistance on the price of fuel. The city is expected to pass a formal resolution on September 8.
Bamford mentioned the idea this week as city council was discussing how the price of fuel is affecting all city operations that use fuel, such as public works and the city transit system.
“The cost of gas at the pumps has probably gone up somewhere by 30 or 40 per cent in this budget year,” Bamford told council.
“The senior governments are reaping a windfall and the municipalities are hurting, and it’s patently unfair,” he added.
“I’m just wondering if its worth our while to request other municipalities to support a resolution from us to these senior governments to ask for one-time relief. I suspect gas will continue going up. I can’t imagine it going up at that rapid rate. This is a unique situation and it think it calls for a request for one-time assistance to offset some of the costs,” said Bamford.
Mayor Tom Laughren endorsed the idea and suggested that Timmins council pass a resolution and distribute it to all other Ontario municipalities in a bid to seek united support.
Laughren noted that in a discussion with the city treasurer on Monday it was revealed the city had been paying 82-cents a litre for gasoline back in January of 2007. The mayor admitted the city is struggling with the higher cost of fuel and pleading the case to higher government is certainly worth the try.
“It’s a huge challenge for sure,” said the mayor.

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