City Council approves proposed budget reductions
Since approving the One Calgary 2019-2022 Service Plans and Budgets in November 2018, City Council directed additional budget reductions in 2019 in the amount of $60 million to provide immediate tax relief to non-residential property owners. Today, Council approved reductions to achieve these savings.
Council approved Administration’s proposed recommendations for the $60 million in reductions (available with the meeting agenda on calgary.ca here), with the following changes:
• Amendment: Package 75 in attachment 3 of the proposed reductions for service reductions to Recreation Opportunities to allocate up to $800,000 from 2019 Corporate Program Savings to allow for interim servicing of the community recreational assets and report to Council September 30, 2019.
• Correction: Package 88 in attachment 3 of the proposed reductions should be classified as an efficiency, not a service reduction.
“We have worked cross-corporately to put forward reductions that align with the guiding principles set by Council. Those principles included a least harm to services approach and treating employees with dignity and respect, “said Glenda Cole, City Manager. “The reductions included $11.3 million in efficiencies.”
The economic downturn has adversely impacted many businesses in Calgary. A sharp decline in the assessed value of downtown non-residential properties has resulted in the redistribution of property taxes to non-residential property owners outside of the downtown core. The $60 million budget reduction has been applied towards the 2019 Municipal Non-Residential Phased Tax Program and, starting in 2020, towards permanently reducing the overall share of non-residential property tax responsibility.
“The City is continually looking for opportunities to streamline costs and improve the value and affordability of services provided to Calgarians,” said Carla Male, Chief Financial Officer. “In addition to realizing the $60 million, and the savings we committed to last November, we will continue to work with Council to determine what further reductions are needed for 2020 and beyond to continue to support Calgary’s economic recovery.”
Media availability – Thursday, July 25, 2019
What: The City of Calgary will implement Council-approved reductions in the amount of $60 million in 2019.
Who: City Manager, Glenda Cole and Chief Financial Officer, Carla Male
Where: Power Reception Hall, Calgary Municipal Building
When: 10:30 to 11:30 a.m.
In order to properly alert unions and in respect to affected staff, we are unable to accommodate media requests ahead of this availability.