February 9, 2018
City ends the 2017 fiscal year with $15 million surplus
Released: 1:26 p.m.
Winnipeg, MB – The City of Winnipeg’s year-end Financial Status Report cites a surplus in the tax-supported operating budget (General Revenue Fund) of $15 million for 2017. The surplus will be transferred to the Financial Stabilization Reserve.
The City undertook a number of measures to offset the impact of a $9.5 million budget shortfall arising from the 2016 tax-supported operating budget. A cost mitigation strategy was proposed and implemented that included a hiring freeze, restrictions on discretionary departmental spending including the use of external consultants and conference related travel, as well as limiting other discretionary spending which covered the shortfall.
The City also benefited from negotiated collective agreements approved by Council which resulted in significant savings in 2017. Furthermore, several departments reported further savings to expenses and additional revenues, which also contributed to the favourable year-end variance.
The City is still in discussions with the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority (WRHA) regarding funding for ambulance services for 2017 and future years. While no decisive long-term funding agreement has been reached, the WRHA has advised that 2017 funding will be capped at 2016 levels, which would result in an estimated $2.3 million shortfall in funding. The City expects the WRHA to provide this funding.
In addition, the City and the Province are continuing discussions regarding provincial funding to the City for 2017 capital projects, totalling approximately $109.2 million. In respect of the capital projects, the City has submitted claims for $78.3 million, for which payments of $24.6 million have been received to date.
“I’m pleased that the cost control measures and the negotiated collective agreements in 2017 contributed to a year-end surplus. This surplus allows us to strengthen the Financial Stabilization Reserve,” said Councillor Scott Gillingham, Chair of the Standing Policy Committee on Finance. “While there is still some uncertainty regarding provincial funding levels, all efforts have been made to exercise sound decision-making in regards to the City’s finances.”
The increase in surplus from November’s $8.7 million projection is largely attributable to savings related to snow clearing in December due to minimal snow accumulation.
The City’s financial update is publicly available through the Decision Making Information System (DMIS).
Released: 1:26 p.m.
Winnipeg, MB – The City of Winnipeg is inviting Winnipeggers to attend an information session about the North Winnipeg Antenna System Project.
The City must relocate an existing antenna system from its current location at the North End Pollution Water Control Centre (NEWPCC) at 2230 Main St. to accommodate for the centre’s future expansion.
To ensure there are no gaps in coverage, a proposed new antenna system must be built in the vicinity of the existing antenna system prior to its decommissioning. This will allow time for the migration of equipment and testing. The City’s proposal is pending approval by Winnipeg Antenna Systems Policy.
The City had previously identified a site near the intersection of Ferrier Road and Murray Street for the relocation, however that site is no longer being considered. The new proposed site, located on City-owned land northwest of the antenna system’s current location, has a smaller impact on nearby residential developments while meeting all other required criteria.
Pending proposal approval, it is anticipated that construction of the new antenna system will begin in the spring/summer 2019, and the existing antenna system will be decommissioned in 2019.
Information session details
Date: Thursday, February 15, 2018
Time: 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Location: Red River Community Centre, multi-purpose room, 293 Murray Ave.
For more information, or if you are unable to attend the public information session and would like to provide feedback online, please visit: winnipeg.ca/AntennaSystem.