A key member of Mayor Rob Ford's executive committee is asking the police force to pinch a few more pennies from its billion-dollar budget.
During deliberations of the 2012 budget on Friday, Councillor Peter Milczyn tabled a motion to carve an extra $4.3-million from the proposed $933.7-million Toronto Police Services budget.
That reduction would flat-line the force's spending between 2011 and 2012.
"If every other city department has to cut beyond what they spent last year, we have to try the same with the police," Mr. Milczyn said.
Mr. Milczyn specified the trim will should come from the force's civilian ranks and non-salary expenses, not from the uniformed staff.
The cut is the equivalent of roughly 60 civilian positions. The force currently employs around 2,100 civilian staff and 5,500 uniformed officers.
Mr. Milczyn wrote his motion while Chief Bill Blair was answering councillors' questions on the force's budget, but it wasn't formally tabled until the meeting's conclusion, meaning there will be no debate on the matter until further budget meetings next week.
For months, government departments have been scrambling to cut the budget by 10 per cent in accordance with a directive from Mayor Rob Ford. While every other department managed some scale of budget reduction that was close, the Toronto Police Service Board consented to a 0.6 per cent budget increase.
"The TTC did its part, coming very close to a 10 per cent reduction," said Mr. Milczyn, vice-chair of the transit commission. "I appreciate that emergency services are a little different, but asking for a flatline is not unreasonable."
Chief Blair left before Mr. Milczyn's motion was tabled, but he insisted his budget compared favourably to other government departments.
"We're all in the same situation, we're all in a tight spot, we've all got to find those reductions and we're all making an effort to do it," Chief Blair said. "City council and the budget committee have got a tough job to do trying to strike that balance and make sure that all of the services that Torontonians expect are delivered to them. I think policing is an important one of those services."