Statement from Catherine McKenney on Opponent’s Plan to Cut City Services

McKenney issued a statement on Sutcliffe’s plan to slash up to $80 million from the city budget. 

October 8, 2022 — Ottawa has a clear choice: cutting up to $80 million from city services or building the city we need. 

My opponent’s platform calls for up to $80 million in cuts to our city’s budget, which will decimate the services we rely on. Mark Sutcliffe has outlined his plan to find up to $60 million in efficiencies, and dip into $20 million in growth revenue that is supposed to fund crucial services like libraries and recreation. When you add it up, it’s $80 million in cuts that people cannot afford. 

I have worked on the city budget for over a decade, as a Councillor and as a municipal public servant focussed on city operations. I know that anyone who says they can find $80 million in cuts in the city budget is prepared to make deep cuts to our city services. And this is dangerous. People can’t afford cuts to our services like libraries, daycares, French language services, recreation, or 3-1-1.

Mark’s plan will take growth funding from city services in neighbourhoods like Carp, Barrhaven, and Orleans to cover additional police in the Byward Market. 

Because when your community grows, the property tax revenues grow to meet the increased need for services, like libraries. But my opponent is planning to dip into that budget line to pay for 100 additional police officers in the Byward Market. To the tune of tens of millions of dollars, growing communities like Barrhaven and Orléans will feel a blow to their services that people rely on. And if you live in a rural community and you’re worried about services for you, the $20 million pulled from covering growth should worry you too. 

Over the past few years, our city has been through a lot together. People can’t afford Mark’s cuts, not now and not over the next four years. The reason people can’t get to work on time, or have to wait hours for their bus that never shows up is due to the cuts to our transit operations in 2011. I’m running for Mayor to solve these problems, while my opponent is proposing to make them worse. 

I decided to first run for office when I worked for the city and saw cuts decimate city services. That’s why I have outlined my plan for a fiscally responsible future for Ottawa that avoids all service cuts. I have released a financial plan with an unprecedented level of transparency, where I’ll keep property taxes at the current 3% rate

Now, Ottawa has a choice. We can be bold and build the city we want, or we can make reckless cuts that will hurt our city, and take away services from those that need it most.

We can choose reliable transit, with free transit for kids 17 and under. We can choose affordable housing and bold climate action, or we can choose tens of millions in cuts. 

Together, we can build the city we need.


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.