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Approved Adjustments to 2014 Business Plans and Budgets

Approved Adjustments to 2014 Business Plans and Budgets



City Council has approved adjustments to the 2014 business plans, operating and capital budgets. Council agreed to rebate $52 million in 2014 tax room to property owners. Council also made decisions that bring the municipal property tax rate increase down to 5.0% from 6.1% in 2014. This amounts to an increase in the 2014 municipal property tax rate of approximately $78.00 per year or $6.50 per month for the typical household in Calgary.

“Through the deliberations, Council demonstrated leadership in making decisions about the kind of City we live in and how to pay for those programs and services. This year at the end of the budget deliberations, Council agreed to an across-the-board reduction and I think this is a good approach to actually push efficiency”, said Mayor Nenshi.

View highlights of the Approved Adjustments to 2014 Business Plans & Budgets below.

View the full report: Approved Adjustments to 2014 Business Plans and Budgets

Approved non-flood adjustments to the 2014 operating budget:
  • Council amended the proposed tax rate increase to 5.0% through reductions in all departments except for the Calgary Police Service.
  • Council gave direction to hold salaries for management exempt staff to a 1.8% increase for inflation in 2014 and approved a zero per cent 2014 increase to their own salaries.
  • 55,000 additional transit service hours including an increased frequency of buses to reduce wait times and 10,000 additional Access Calgary rides to meet increased demand for accessible transit service across Calgary. Increased revenue from ridership will be used to fund this increase in transit service hours and to improve safety and enforcement on the bus system through the addition of 51.5 full time equivalents.
  • $683 thousand one-time adjustment for the Heritage Park 50th Anniversary Project comprised of hundreds of special events throughout the year designed to support cultural tourism, culture products development, festival events, and tourism marketing.
  • $550 thousand one time operating adjustment approved to engage Calgarians in the development of The City’s 2015-2018 business plan and budget.
  • $400 thousand one time operating adjustment approved for the Calgary Poverty Reduction Initiative.
  • $315 thousand one-time adjustment to sustain the operational integrity of the EPCOR Centre through 2014, to help offset the impact of the Government of Alberta’s elimination of the Major Facilities Operating Grant.
  • $150 thousand one-time adjustment for Tourism Calgary/Calgary Sport Tourism Association to promote Calgary’s capacity to host sporting events and attract events that stimulate economic activity, extend the city’s profile, and improve overall quality of life in the community.
Approved non-flood adjustments to the 2014 capital budget:
  • Commit future $52 million tax room for each year from 2015 through 2024 to fund a new Green Line transit way in both North Central and Southeast Calgary.
  • Start design and construction of Glenmore Trail and Ogden Road interchange and adjacent roadways with $20 million in 2014, toward the total project cost of $102 million, to improve the operational efficiency of the transportation network, as previously prioritized and approved by Council in the Investing in Mobility Plan.
  • Preapproval of $65 million in self-supported debt to fund the Biosolids Dewatering Facility in 2015 and 2016, to enable the tender of design and construction work in 2014 to meet the previously approved construction schedule of the Organics Composting Facility. 
  • Preapproval of $49 million in self-supported debt to fund the Bowness Sanitary Sewer Upgrade in 2015 and 2016, to eliminate the capacity constraint in Bowness and allow for projected growth. Pre-approval of capital funding is required to meet the scheduled timelines with tendering complete in 2014.
  • Preapproval of $5.2 million in self-supported debt to fund the Bowmont East Stormwater Quality Retrofit project in 2015. This project will reduce the sediment loading to the Bow River, which is part of The City’s regulatory compliance with the province and meets Council’s priority of enhancing, protecting and respecting our environment. Preapproval of capital funding is required to meet scheduled timelines, with construction beginning in 2014.
  • $3 million from the DBA Sustainment Reserve Fund for Phase 2 of ePermit enhancements enabling PDA to expand online permit offerings to provide better service to Calgarians.
  • $2 million from the DBA Sustainment Reserve Fund to streamline information intake in PDA with the creation of a Development Agreement database, to help ensure timely and accurate information for customers and staff.
  • $2 million from the 9-1-1 Communication Centre Capital Financing Reserve for technology upgrades to improve safety and service to Calgarians.
  • $200 thousand increase approved to the capital budget of Land Servicing and Housing Program funded by the Real Estate Services Reserve, in order to complete the Phase One work of Saddleridge Area Structure Plan.
Approved flood related adjustments to the 2014 operating budget:
  • $2.6 million for a one-time increase to the UEP operating budget including, $278 thousand for Bow River cleanup expected to be funded from the Disaster Recovery Program and, $2.3 million funded from the Utilities sustainment reserve for the River Flood Mitigation Panel to bring forward recommendations on how to mitigate future flooding.
  • $520 thousand one time operating adjustment to cover lost revenue from the closure of the Talisman Centre aquatics areas. This funding request is a placeholder as it is estimated that this amount will be covered under business continuity insurance.

Approved flood related adjustments to the 2014 capital budget:
  • $65.9 million capital funding to restore riverbanks and repair water infrastructure to pre-flood levels. The majority will be recovered from insurance, the Provincial Flood Recovery Erosion Control Program and the Disaster Recovery Program.
  • $13.9 million to restore recreation infrastructure at Shouldice Athletic Park, at Maple Ridge Golf Course and at Shaganappi Point Golf Course.
  • $10.8 million to repair flood damage at City parks including Prince's Island Park and Bowness Park, and $12.9 million to repair flood impacted pathways.
  • $7.9 million additional funds to cover estimated replacement costs for the Rideau Park, Riverdale Avenue and Sandy Beach pedestrian bridges, all which sustained significant damage during the June 2013 flood.
  • $4.2 million to continue to repair flood damaged buildings and replace contents at the Calgary Zoo in 2014.
  • $2.7 million capital funding to continue to repair significant damage to structural, electrical and mechanical infrastructure at the Talisman Centre in 2014. This funding request is a placeholder as it is expected this item will be covered under insurance.
  • $1.5 million to repair flood damage and repair or replace contents at the Calgary Public Library. This funding request is a placeholder as it is expected this item will be covered under insurance.
Approved adjustments to user fees and rates:
  • User Fee for Fire Inspection changed to $43 from minimum charge of $26 to respond to increasing demands of growth on the Calgary Fire Department’s Safety Code Officers, to improve fire inspection service delivery to Calgarians.
Council also agreed to use the Fiscal Stability Reserve to fund a number of one-time items, such as $20 million for 2014 flood related recovery and resiliency costs in Utilities to avoid increased drainage rates and higher debt. As well, Council directed Administration to bring back, in the first quarter of 2014, a report on Calgary Zoo floodproofing.

The adjustments process allows The City to meet the demands of growth while balancing affordability with resources needed to deliver front-line services, which remains a challenge for The City. The flexibility built in to the multi-year approach to business planning and budgeting allows Council to make necessary changes from a position of knowing what is critical and adjusting the business plans and budgets to retain a longer-term perspective.

Calgarians will be engaged in the development of the 2015-2018 business plan and budget in the coming months. 



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