City of Greater Sudbury Tables 2016 Base Budget

Dec 8, 2015

For immediate release
Tuesday, December 8, 2015

The City of Greater Sudbury tabled the 2016 proposed base budget at the Finance and Administration Committee of Greater Sudbury Council on Tuesday, December 8. The base budget includes proposes a municipal property tax increase of 3.9 per cent for 2016.

“I am looking forward to the start of budget deliberations,” said Greater Sudbury Mayor Brian Bigger. “We will continue to work with staff to provide value for money for residents of Greater Sudbury, while keeping the four pillars of Council at the forefront: Growth and economic development, Responsive, fiscally prudent open governance, Quality of life and place, and Sustainable infrastructure.”

The total gross budgeted expenses for 2016 are $518 million. This is funded with $239 million in property taxes and $279 million in other revenues. This means to ensure a balanced budget and maintain current levels of service, $239 million in property taxes will need to be raised in 2016. This equals a 3.9 per cent property tax increase for residents. For a typical bungalow in the former City of Sudbury area, assessed at a CVA of $230,000, a 3.9 per cent tax increase would amount to an extra $102 in property taxes for the year.

Municipal taxes fund City services and programs to approximately 160,000 citizens within Greater Sudbury. In the proposed base budget, 33 per cent of municipal property taxes would be spent on public safety, including police, fire and emergency medical services, and 24 per cent would be spent on roads. The remaining 43 per cent funds all other citizen services, including housing and social services, leisure and recreation, growth and development, libraries, transit, environmental services and administration.

The proposed 3.9 per cent 2016 municipal property tax increase is made up of provincially-mandated program costs and a decline in provincial funding (1.3 per cent), maintaining services net of assessment growth (1.8 per cent), additional capital investments (0.3 per cent), and an increase in outside board budgets from Police, the Sudbury and District Health Unit and the Nickel District Conservation Authority (0.5 per cent).

“Developing a budget for a large organization such as the City of Greater Sudbury is very challenging,” said Finance and Administration Committee Chair and Councillor Mike Jakubo. “Staff works diligently to address these challenges, and we will continue to work to maintain services and explore new ideas to minimize property tax increases for residents.”

The 2016 base budget includes cost reductions and efficiencies to reduce the municipal tax levy. This includes service delivery reviews, new revenue generating programs, the implementation of energy efficiencies and more. Staff continues to explore and implement long-term ideas stemming from the Project 6 Million process and investments are being made in social housing, infrastructure and aging fleet vehicles, including winter control equipment.

During budget deliberations, the Finance and Administration Committee will further review the proposed budget and budget options, with final approval tentatively scheduled for February 2016.

The next meeting of the Finance and Administration Committee will be held on Tuesday, December 15, in the Council Chamber of Tom Davies Square. At this meeting, the Police Services Budget will be presented and its capital and operating budgets will be reviewed.

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