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Ward 11 - Jeromy Farkas

This Week in Ward 11: Town Hall, Traffic Chaos and More!

For the month of April, our town hall will be held in the Beltline on Thursday, April 25, at the Calgary Masonic Temple, 330 12 Avenue SW. 

As always, we will host residents of Ward 11 and anyone else who may wish to come from 7:00 to 8:30 PM. 

I look forward to providing an update about my work at City Hall and will answer questions you may have. Light refreshments will be provided.​​​


Farkas to reform Coun​cil’s “Golden Pension” and end Mayor’s second pension

  April 23, 2018, Calgary, AB – Ward 11 Councillor Jeromy Farkas has submitted a notice of motion to reform Council’s “Golden Pension” and discontinue the Mayor’s second pension.

“I am proposing that Council members keep the benefits they've earned to date, but going forward, we make the plan fair for taxpayers. This is the first step in tackling the bigger issue of rising salaries, wages, and benefits at City Hall. The current council is not to blame for this situation, but we have an obligation to step up and fix it,” said Farkas.

Farkas is proposing that Calgary adopt the system currently in place for Edmonton, at approximately one-quarter of the cost. Between 2007 and 2016, Calgary taxpayers paid over $5 for every $1 put in by council members. In comparison, City taxpayers contribute about $1.10 for every $1 put in by most employees. In the same period, Edmonton spent $1.3 million for costs related to retirement benefits for its council, while Calgary paid more than $6.1 million over the same period. 
“City Hall must reduce spending to relieve the unnecessary burdens it puts on Calgarians. If Council is to make a point of reducing costs on wages and salaries of City employees, we need to start by walking the talk.” Farkas continued.

Calgary’s Council pension costs exceed that of Ottawa, Edmonton, and Vancouver combined. Of Canada’s top 20 municipalities by population, Calgary is the only city that provides its mayor a second pension, and that pension is 100 per cent paid for by taxpayers.

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WHEREAS according to the City of Calgary’s 2016 Annual Report listing the contribution rates for the Local Authorities Pension Plan, the City contributes 11.39% of the employee’s salary, up to an employee’s yearly maximum pensionable earnings for the Canada Pension Plan, while city employees contribute 10.39%, working out to a ratio of approximately $1.10 to $1.00;

WHEREAS from 2007 to 2016, Calgary City Council’s pension benefits through the Elected Officials Pension Plan cost taxpayers $6.1 million, while council members only contributed $1.2 million towards their pension benefits, working out to a ratio of approximately $5.08 to $1.00;

WHEREAS from 2007 to 2016, the City of Calgary spent more on its city council’s pension benefits than Edmonton, Ottawa and Vancouver combined;

WHEREAS of Canada’s ten largest municipalities, Calgary is the only city to offer its Mayor two pensions through the additional Supplementary Pension Plan for Elected Officials;

WHEREAS by guaranteeing Council members a payment throughout their retirement years, the City has taken on tremendous risk, at times requiring lump sum “bail out” payments, such as $298,000 in 2011, $246,000 in 2012, and $1,067,000 in 2013;

WHEREAS while it is the City of Calgary’s policy to strike an independent citizens committee to determine Council’s compensation, Council ignored a key recommendation from the last committee to eliminate council’s transition payments;

WHEREAS pursuing reductions in benefits before job layoffs aligns with a “least harm” approach to budgetary decisions;

AND WHEREAS leaders must be willing to do themselves, what they ask of others;

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that effective June 10th 2019, the Supplementary Pension Plan for Elected Officials is frozen, with benefits accrued to date to be honoured, but not grow based on increases in salary or future contributions;

AND FURTHER BE IT RESOLVED that effective June 10th 2019, the Elected Officials Pension Plan is frozen, with benefits accrued to date to be honoured, but not grow based on increases in salary or future contributions;

AND FURTHER BE IT RESOLVED that effective June 10th 2019, in replacement of the frozen pension plans, City Council adopts the equitable retirement benefit system currently in place for City Council members in the City of Edmonton, namely, giving the choice to participate in one of the following options:

11% contribution by the City of Calgary to elected official’s total annual salary to support retirement; or

12% contribution by the City of Calgary directed to Alberta Urban Municipalities Association (AUMA) Defined Contribution Pension Plan




WHEREAS The City of Calgary owns, operates and maintains a wide range of infrastructure assets that support social, economic and environmental services that The City provides;  

AND WHEREAS The City of Calgary is responsible for maintaining a growing network that supports the safety and mobility of Calgarians and completes a large number of temporary traffic control setups per year (over 24,000 completed in 10 months in 2018);  

AND WHEREAS The City of Calgary uses a Temporary Traffic Control Manual that is available on that has been developed in consultation with industry and includes best practices for traffic detour installations;   

AND WHEREAS The City of Calgary issues City Wide Annual Permits to contractors, which provides them permission to work under a set of conditions and implement their own temporary traffic control on Collector and Residential roads as classified by the City of Calgary Road and Street Network Map;

AND WHEREAS a significant number of major construction projects in a concentrated area present logistical challenges for efficient coordination and emergency access;    

AND WHEREAS emergency work unrelated to construction projects must be allowed in the event of utility disruptions and emergency repairs;

AND WHEREAS residents, businesses and visitors to Calgary greatly value a well-maintained, coordinated and safe transportation network;  

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that Council requests Administration to provide an explanation to the public regarding the execution of the April 18th closures as part of the Southwest BRT Project;

AND FURTHER BE IT RESOLVED THAT City Council directs City Administration to only proceed with full closures of a major roadway or intersection in SW Calgary (bounded by Glenmore Trail, Anderson Road, 14th Street SW and SW Ring Road) when there are no additional single lane closures impacting travel on major roads within the same area;  

AND FURTHER BE IT RESOLVED that Council directs Administration to implement the following additional parameters when executing future road closures relating to this project:

1. Provide public notice of time and date of disruption

2. Provide public notice of alternate routes 

3. Conduct a cross-departmental check on work being done on alternate routes

4. Provide warning signs installed with sufficient notice for drivers to change directions

5. Implement traffic signal timing adjustments to minimize traffic congestion

6. Provide police or trained transportation staff to direct traffic if necessary

7. Evaluate whether temporary lanes can be built to alleviate congestion

8. Provide notification to Alberta Health Services, EMS staff, Calgary Fire and Calgary Police

9. Provide a plan for emergency vehicle access as required by emergency services.

Categories: Council initiatives, Events

This content represents the personal views and opinions of the Ward Councillor and should not be taken as a statement of policy of The City of Calgary. The inclusion of any external content does not imply endorsement by The City of Calgary.