"We can't allow things that are inaccurate to stand." — The Word of Our Dan, February 19, 2008.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Comparative government

The City of St. John’s has a population of 101,000. It collects approximately $135-million in taxes and several millions more in other, non-tax revenue. It receives $17-million in transfers and grants from the other orders of government. It spends about $165-million on programs, services, and capital expenses. It has approximately 1200 to 1400 direct employees, depending on the time of year.

The province of Newfoundland and Labrador has a population of 506,000. It collects approximately $3.8-billion in provincial taxes and other direct provincial revenues. It receives $1.5-billion in federal transfer payments. It spends over $5.2-billion on programs, services, and capital expenses. It has approximately 10,000 direct provincial civil service employees, plus jurisdiction over another 16,000 employees in health and social service institutions, 6,500 in post-secondary education institutions, and over 9,000 teachers and other school board employees, for a total provincial public sector of nearly 42,000 people.

In three of the past seven calendar years, and for the past two years consecutively (this year included) St. John’s City Council has held more meetings than the Newfoundland and Labrador House of Assembly has held sittings.

In 2005, the House of Assembly out-sat St. John’s City Council by one day, 45 to 44.

In 2006, St. John’s out-met the provincial legislature 45 to 40.

In 2007, that figure is 35 to 33 in favour of the City.

In the past seven years, St. John’s City Council has met a cumulative total of 305 times.

The House of Assembly, during the same period, has had 303 daily sittings.

City Council will meet all through the fall and early winter.

The House of Assembly will not.


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