Cities in Canadian Federalism
AbstractWe consider the place of cities, particularly large cities, in Canadian federalism from several perspectives. Although by most measures the current fiscal condition of Canadian cities seems fairly good, we argue that beneath this happy picture lies a less happy reality. Owing to the limited and relatively inelastic revenue base to which even the largest cities have access, the underlying basis of Canada’s urban prosperity is being eroded, with potentially damaging implications for national well-being over the long run. In an important sense, the roots of this problem lie in the fact that cities do not have any real role or voice in Canada’s federal structure. Since neither role nor voice is likely to be bestowed on them in the near future, however, we conclude by laying out a series of less fundamental actions that all levels of government have to undertake if they wish to maintain not only the present reputation of Canada’s big cities as ‘a nice place to live’ but also, more fundamentally, the urban dynamic that evidence around the world suggests increasingly underpins economic growth.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by International Tax Program, Institute for International Business, Joseph L. Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto in its series International Tax Program Papers with number 0603.
Length: 42 Pages
Date of creation: May 2006
Date of revision:
cities; local fiscal conditions; intergovernmental fiscal relations; Canada;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- H77 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - Intergovernmental Relations; Federalism
- H11 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - Structure and Scope of Government
- R51 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Regional Government Analysis - - - Finance in Urban and Rural Economies
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2006-05-13 (All new papers)
- NEP-GEO-2006-05-13 (Economic Geography)
- NEP-PBE-2006-05-13 (Public Economics)
- NEP-URE-2006-05-13 (Urban & Real Estate Economics)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Francois Vaillancourt & Richard M. Bird, 2005. "The Interregional Incidence of Public Budgets in Federations: Measurement Issues, Evidence from Canada, and Policy Relevance," International Tax Program Papers 0510, International Tax Program, Institute for International Business, Joseph L. Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto.
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- Enid Slack & Richard M. Bird, 2004. "The Fiscal Sustainability of the Greater Toronto Area," International Tax Program Papers 0405, International Tax Program, Institute for International Business, Joseph L. Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto.
- Richard M. Bird, 2014. "Reflections on Measuring Urban Fiscal Health," International Center for Public Policy Working Paper Series, at AYSPS, GSU paper1425, International Center for Public Policy, Andrew Young School of Policy Studies, Georgia State University.
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