December 2017 News Archive

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Recommended 2018 Operating Budget released including a significant focus on community safety.

December 13, 2017 11:53 AM
(Red Deer, Alberta)

With a focus on sustainability and a significant investment to address community safety for the citizens of Red Deer, the recommended 2018 Operating Budget considers the current state of growth, economy, and maintaining and enhancing quality of life for Red Deerians.

Red Deer City Council will begin reviewing The City’s 2018 Operating Budget on Tuesday, January 9, as the next step in the 2018 budget process. The $80.7 million 2018 Capital Budget was approved on November 30, 2017.

“Our community has been faced with an economic downturn that affected businesses, individuals and us as a municipality, and we recognize that. The proposed 2018 Operating Budget aims to balance the need to maintain core City services, while using resources effectively and responsibly,” said City Manager Craig Curtis. “The proposed budget also addresses the needs, expressed by our citizens, to focus on community safety initiatives.”

The proposed budget is based on Council’s Strategic Plan, guidelines established by City Council, initiatives in City department service plans and feedback from citizens regarding community safety. It includes items such as the addition of four RCMP members, two municipal employees and increased funding for rough sleeper camp debris clean up.

“The capital and operating budgets are primary way administration puts Council’s strategy into action for the community,” said Curtis. “At a time when individuals and businesses in our community are recovering from the economic climate, we need to plan for sustainable services and ensure we are addressing community concerns, like safety, at the same time.”

The 2018 Operating Budget being recommended by administration considers City Council’s direction that the property tax increase does not exceed two per cent in 2018, which must include a one per cent capital contribution (amenity and growth).

“Our recommended operating budget reflects the economy, while sustaining City services,” said Chief Financial Officer Dean Krejci. “The budget being recommended to Council has an increase of $2.59 million or the equivalent of a two per cent tax increase in the municipal portion of a property tax bill. This includes one per cent for capital for amenities and growth,” said Krejci. “However, this figure is only a starting point and will be impacted by Council debate.”

Based on the submitted budget, a home valued at $325,000, which experienced an average assessment value change for the 2018 tax year, may see an approximately $42.14 increase per year in the municipal portion of their taxes. This does not include any changes to the education portion of property taxes as these won’t be known until later this year when the province releases its budget.

Administration will present its Operating Budget to City Council for consideration on January 9 and debate will continue on January 10 through 12. Dates are also held for January 15 through 19 if required.

As part of the 2018 Operating Budget process, citizens have the opportunity to review the budget and provide feedback to Council before it is considered. Feedback can be provided by email to legislativeservices@reddeer.ca or in writing at City Hall, Collicutt Centre, Red Deer Public Library Downtown Branch, Timberlands Branch and G.H. Dawe Community Centre Branch. Copies of the budget are also available at those locations starting December 14. Budget details can also be found online at www.reddeer.ca/budget. The deadline to submit feedback is 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, December 28.

For more information see the 2018 Operating Budget QA Backgrounder (pdf)

For more information, please contact:

Craig Curtis  
City Manager  
The City of Red Deer
403-342-8156

Dean Krejci
Chief Financial Officer
The City of Red Deer 
403-342-8204

Communications & Strategic Planning                 
The City of Red Deer                
403-342-8147

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