The provincial budget tabled yesterday contains funding announcements for major investments in the community while maintaining core capital and operating funding streams for The City. The budget focuses on moving Alberta forward by building health care system capacity and job creation.
“There are several infrastructure investments in Red Deer and area, including the $1.8 billion investment in our hospital. Investments like this stimulate our local economy in the short and long term,” said Mayor Ken Johnston. “We didn’t see any surprises in this budget and are happy to say that the provincial revenue we rely on for everyday services to our citizens are maintained.”
The City receives funding through several provincial revenues sources each year, including Grants in Place of Property Taxes (GIPOT) and the Municipal Sustainability Initiative (MSI) – capital and operating. Based on the budget tabled yesterday these amounts remain stable meaning there will be no impact to the current capital or operating budgets of The City. The MSI program will change to the Local Government Fiscal Framework in 2023 and The City looks forward to understanding how the change will benefit The City’s financial health.
“MSI is a core funding stream of our capital budget and for over 10 years it has been a steady reliable funding program,” said General Manager of Corporate & Employee Services, Lisa Perkins. “Because there is no reduction, we can complete much need capital work in our community and contribute to economic recovery.”
The total education requisition collected by The City on behalf of the Province will remain unchanged for the 2022 tax notices. City Council will pass a tax rate bylaw in April that includes the education requisition, the requisition for the senior’s lodge program and the property tax requirement approved by Council in November 2021 at zero percent for the municipal operating budget.
In addition to the main funding streams remaining stable, The City is encouraged to see investments in post-secondary education, housing, and health care including mental health which have the potential to have a positive impact on our community and residents. The City will continue to review the budget over the next several weeks to fully appreciate the impacts to the community.
The provincial budget is funded through a variety of sources, and the province is projecting increases in all revenue areas such as oil and gas, agriculture and exports.
“The investments in Red Deer and in particular the Red Deer Regional Hospital expansion speak to the role Red Deer has in providing regional services and in building economic growth. Between the economic downturn and global pandemic, the past several years have been emotionally draining and has created financial strain in every area,” said Johnston. “Yesterday’s budget gives us hope for a more prosperous future in Alberta, I am looking forward to seeing how today’s investments impact our community for generations to come.”
For more information, please contact:
The City of Red Deer