What is impacting the expected increases in the City's budget?

    A lot has changed in the economy in the last four years. Housing starts are down, office vacancy rates have increased and assessed values of properties are expected to decrease. All of these changes impact the city's bottom line.  

    As well, there is increasing pressure on the city's operational budget due to such things as expected electricity increases, debt servicing and salary costs. 

    Check out more details about what's happening in the economy here.

    What is the City doing to keep costs down?

    The City has been working aggressively to find ways to operate more efficiently. Council is committed to keeping our human resources costs under control, to aggressively address the problem of rising power rates and to focus on stability through partnerships with community and government organizations.

    City Operations

    The 2014 contract with our employees will in the long term eliminate our pension debt burden and a 2016 program review resulted in a labour force reduction and over $13 million in savings annually, but there is still more we can do. We have announced a freeze on general salary increases for management employees, which have not increased since July 1, 2017. Union negotiations will resume in 2019.

    We are keeping our staffing costs down by minimizing new hires; in 2019, we have a net increase of only 8.38 full time equivalents, the majority of which are staff to operate the new Kenmount Terrace Community Centre.

    We have eliminated management car allowances and overtime, saving the organization approximately $500,000 annually. We have reduced our phone costs by 43%. This year, we also began a new continuous improvement initiative to find ways to reduce waste and improve service delivery which will also have an impact on the bottom line.

    By eliminating the Torbay Road North Capital Reserve contribution, we will be able to save $1.8M annually or $5.4M over the next three years. This reserve was set up to fund required traffic improvements in the area and is now large enough to fund any anticipated work in the next three years.

    An ongoing Transit Review of Metrobus and Go Bus services will look at ways to improve public transit while maximizing the City’s investment.

    Why can't we run a deficit?

    We are required by provincial legislation to ensure that expenses balance with our revenue through our budget process.

    How does the city spend the budget?

    What are the City's sources of revenue?

    How does the City finance capital investments?

    Visit the capital budget discussion page for details.

    How does the assessed value of my home combined with the mill rate impact my tax bill?