Message from the Mayor and Chair of Finance:
This preliminary operating and capital budget document sets out the action plan for the priorities expressed by the citizens of Winnipeg in last year’s election and from the budget consultation process that took place in 2014. We were faced with difficult choices in this budget process, but we believe this preliminary document provides a balanced and strategic approach to address significant challenges that are the direct result of total revenue streams that do not align with the total expenditures required to increase much needed City services and projects.
In the past, our City relied heavily on nonrecurring, one-time revenues to sustain 14 years of property tax cuts and freezes, contributing to a projected $73.4 million structural deficit to the city’s tax-supported budget in 2016. New, long-term growth revenue will be required to address this growing operational deficit. It is clear that we can no longer continue doing the same things in the same way. Strategic investment, innovation and transformation are required in order to address the future; this proposed budget offers several solutions going forward as we continue to fight for our Fair Share of the provincial PST and work with citizens to provide the top quality services and investments they deserve and expect.
Winnipeg is a fast-growing Canadian city requiring a committed focus on investment in the renewal of roads and, therefore, we propose a 22.7 per cent increase to our regional and local street renewal capital program to $103.3 million in 2015, an increase of $19.1 million from 2014. Through a commitment to a property tax increase to inflation at 2.3 per cent, (1 per cent dedicated to each of regional and local roads), the realignment of the Street Renewal Frontage Levy to construction inflation since its previous increase in 2011, $6.5 million incremental cash to capital from departmental efficiencies, and over $20 million in debt financing, Winnipeg’s infrastructure is being renewed at a rate to help keep pace with our growing, thriving, more modern city.
See the highlights of the 2015 Budget in this presentation:
Citizens are invited to participate in the 2015 Budget process. Please call 311, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to register as a delegation for the following meetings, which are scheduled as part of the 2015 Budget approval process:
Friday, March 6, 2015
Winnipeg Police Board Meeting (regular meeting)
Monday, March 9, 2015
Standing Policy Committee on Protection and Community Services (regular meeting)
Tuesday, March 10, 2015
Standing Policy Committee on Property and Development (regular meeting)
Monday, March 16, 2015
Standing Policy Committee on Infrastructure Renewal and Public Works (rescheduled from March 13, 2015)
Tuesday, March 17, 2015
Special Executive Policy Committee to hear delegations on Budgets
Wednesday, March 18, 2015
Executive Policy Committee to consider Standing Policy Committee recommendations and table final recommendations (regular meeting)
Monday, March 23, 2015
Special Meeting of Council to pass Budgets