Council provides early direction on 2025 and 2026 budget adjustments

Since being elected in 2022, our City Council has made critical investments in the services that Calgarians say are a high priority, such as housing, public safety and transit. At the same time, Council has been mindful that our residents and business owners continue to experience affordability pressures.

Every year, Council adjusts our Service Plans and Budgets in response to Calgarians’ needs. This year, they’ve provided direction to Administration much earlier in the process than normal to give more certainty to taxpayers. In response to current economic factors, including population growth, inflation and the cost-of-living pressures on residents and businesses, Council has directed Administration to:

Keep the estimated property tax increase to existing taxpayers to no more than 3.6 per cent in 2025 (estimated at 5.5 per cent for residential and 1.4 per cent for non-residential) and 3.1 per cent (estimated to result in a 5.0 per cent for residential and 0.9 per cent for non-residential) in 2026 that Council has already approved; and
• Find reasonable operating budget reductions to either reduce the property tax required or allow for consideration of select additional investments in priority areas. Over the next few months, 

Administration will work closely with Council on their direction. In the fall, before deliberations in November, Administration will present a preview of the recommended service plan and budget adjustments to the public. 

“As we always do, we’ll be working with Council to continue ensuring every dollar we spend drives value and delivers positive outcomes for Calgarians,” said Chief Administrative Officer David Duckworth. “Changes to the service plans and budgets will be considered with the goal of maintaining a high quality of life, keeping affordability in mind while contributing to the overall well-being and resilience of our city.”

“Our budgeting process always involves looking for continuous improvement opportunities to serve the complex needs of our community better,” said Chief Financial Officer Carla Male. “Over the past decade, The City has demonstrated exceptional performance by maintaining spending below population and inflation growth. We’ve done this despite mounting pressures on The City.” 

Before Council deliberates this November, we want to hear from the public. There will be opportunities for Calgarians to provide input on what’s important to them. We will be hearing from Calgarians through our upcoming Spring survey and gathering views about living in Calgary, perception of quality of life, overall satisfaction with services, perception of value for taxes, and Calgarians’ outlook for the future. Calgarians will also have a chance to speak directly with Council during public submissions.