Rob Ford appointed Frank Di Giorgio his new budget chief today, and the former math teacher wasted no time in outlining his priorities, according to Global:
“Personally, I think a lot of the gravy has been looked at and caught. I think that there is probably little low-hanging fruit at this time. I think we need to perhaps look to generating greater revenues and looking at opportunities of bringing in new revenue other than increasing taxes.” He also said reducing – or removing – the land-transfer tax is a possibility.
Apparently, he and Ford went on to say they were aiming to reduce the land transfer tax by 10 per cent.
This is somewhat of a departure from Frank Di Giorgio’s old opinion on the Land Transfer Tax. In December 2011, he told Mark Ostler of Novae Res Urbus:
“I made it very clear right from the start, prior to the election and just after the election, that I would be opposed to eliminating the land transfer tax. I haven’t changed my position,” Councillor Frank Di Giorgio told NRU this week.
He explained that position to NRU at the time as not just being practical–he thought it was a superior form of tax to property taxes and vehicle taxes.
For reasons I may explain later, I think he was smarter about this then than he sounds today.
(Thanks to Mark Ostler for remembering this interview on Twitter, and to Julie Baldassi of NRU for passing along the link.)