City Tables Proposed 2020 Municipal Budget

6-Nov-2019

City Tables Proposed 2020 Municipal Budget

The proposed municipal budget for 2020 was presented to the Finance and Administration Committee of Council this evening, marking the start of the budget process to determine service priorities and spending over the coming year.

The proposed budget satisfies Council’s direction to deliver municipal services with a maximum 3.5 per cent tax increase.  Staff has been working on this budget since direction was given in May in an environment which includes significant Provincial policy change placing pressure on municipal finances and above inflation increases in a variety of costs.  Service partners, like the Greater Sudbury Police Service, Public Health Sudbury and District and the Nickel District Conservation Authority experienced similar financial pressures and the related increases in cost had to be balanced by reviewing service levels and making adjustments to estimates in some areas of the budget that increase the risk of cost overruns.

For a typical home assessed at $230,000, a 3.5 per cent increase is an additional $9 a month on a property tax bill.

“I want to thank staff for the work that has gone into the development of this proposed budget. I am most pleased with the significant level of capital work required to close the infrastructure gap that our City and every City in Canada is facing”,” said Mike Jakubo, Ward 7 Councillor and Chair of the Finance and Administration Committee. “I look forward to reviewing the document and working with my colleagues to finalize a budget that ensures future fiscal sustainability.”

A proposed operating budget of $614.9 million includes costs to perform routine operations and deliver Council’s approved service levels. Approximately 47 per cent of the operating budget is funded by property taxes.

A proposed capital budget of $162.1 million dedicates approximately half to roads and drainage projects. Other investments include asset renewal, technology solutions, facility investments and road maintenance equipment. A special capital levy of 1.5 per cent is recommended address infrastructure and asset renewal.

Municipal water and wastewater services are funded by end users as mandated by the province. The annual recommended increase to rates is 4.8 per cent under the city’s water and wastewater long-range financial plan.

“The 2020 Budget proposes significant infrastructure renewal investments and addresses the priorities Council established in its Strategic Plan,” said Ed Archer, Chief Administrative Officer for the City of Greater Sudbury. “We are making progress on some of our asset renewal needs but the choices required to producing a balanced budget while maintaining taxation levels within the limit set by Council were challenging. It is important to maintain a multi-year outlook and a clear focus on Council’s priorities. I believe our proposed 2020 budget does that.” 

Highlights of the proposed 2020 budget include:
•    A proposal to invest 49 per cent of the capital budget in roads for a total investment of $79 million
•    A proposed investment of $39.1 million in water and wastewater infrastructure
•    A proposed $1.4 million capital investment in landfill and waste diversion sites in Sudbury and Hanmer
•    A proposed $2.4 million capital investment to maintain and improve the Howard Armstrong Recreation Centre, Dowling Leisure Centre and Gerry McCrory Countryside Sports Complex
•    A proposed capital investment of $7.8 million to maintain and further improve new service levels achieved under the GOVA public transit system
•    A proposed $3.6 million capital investment in information technology projects and solutions to modernize customer transaction processes and improve customer service
•    A proposed $1.4 million contribution for debt financing of a new building for the Greater Sudbury Police Service, with options currently being reviewed by the Police Services Board

Residents are invited to share their priorities for the 2020 municipal budget from November 6 to 22, 2019. A survey and budget allocation tool is available online at overtoyou.greatersudbury.ca. Printed surveys are available at Greater Sudbury Public Libraries and Citizen Service Centres. In-person engagement opportunities will be available throughout November. 

Resident feedback will be shared with Council’s Finance and Administration Committee during budget deliberations scheduled for December 3, 4 and 5, 2019. 

More information about the 2020 Budget is available at www.greatersudbury.ca/budget

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