Mark Sutcliffe says his plan doesn’t have a hole — but it does and it’s $100 million

Catherine McKenney has the experience to make a financial plan without a $100 million hole.

October 15, 2022 (Ottawa)—After Catherine McKenney pointed out the hole in Mark Sutcliffe’s financial plan at last night’s CTV Ottawa debate, here’s what his team had to say in response:

“As Catherine McKenney should know, the city receives about 1/2 of its revenue from user fees and government grants. Government grants rise with inflation, and user fees are normally adjusted for inflation and growth.” 

But that’s just not true. 

On government transfers, often these are from funding envelopes set by higher levels of government over which municipal governments have no control, and some do not keep up with inflation.

On user fees: Mark just admitted in that statement that he’s going to hike fees, which will make life more expensive for you.

Here are some examples of what will become more expensive under Mark’s plan:

  • Parking fees and traffic enforcement tickets
  • Certain recreation programming 
  • Building permits 
  • Street parking permits 

If you pay a fee to the City, it’ll go up with Mark Sutcliffe.

Mark Sutcliffe is planning to increase user fees by the rate of inflation. Does that mean parking fees are going up by 5%? 

What happens to OC Transpo fares after Mark’s one-year fare freeze…up by 10%? What does he think increasing permit costs by 5% would do to home affordability?

In other words, Mark is planning his tax increases at 2.5% — but making up the difference through charging taxpayers more for the services they use.

Here’s what Catherine had to say in response to the $100 million hole in Mark’s budget:

“Mark is cutting services and hiking user fees, and his financial plan still doesn’t add up,” said McKenney. “I’m running for Mayor to invest in the services our city needs. I’ll make transit affordable and reliable, so you can get to work on time. I’ll invest in safer roads for everyone. I’ll address the housing affordability crisis and end chronic homelessness.”

McKenney has the experienced leadership Ottawa needs in the Mayor’s office. 

“I’m ready to lead our city on day one,” added McKenney. “Because when inflation is at record highs, who doesn’t budget for inflation for your entire budget?”

Catherine McKenney is running to make Ottawa a world-class city — which takes strong financial leadership.

While Mark has made up other numbers to misrepresent Catherine’s plan, Catherine’s financial plan is fully costed to show how the city can maintain the current 3% approach to property taxes. Any other number, like 12%, is factually incorrect.


Catherine McKenney is running for Mayor to make Ottawa the greenest, healthiest, and most connected city in Canada. For more information visit

Media contact:

Heather Badenoch via [email protected] or 613-518-3170.