Advertisement

Impacts of provincial budget cuts on Calgary council’s agenda Monday

Click to play video: 'Alberta Budget 2019: Nenshi says UCP has ‘some explaining to do’ after 2019 budget cuts' Alberta Budget 2019: Nenshi says UCP has ‘some explaining to do’ after 2019 budget cuts
WATCH (Oct. 24, 2019): Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi says the UCP has broken a promise as part of the 2019 Alberta budget – Oct 24, 2019

On Monday, Calgary city council will wade into recommendations on how to deal with a shortfall of $73 million in provincial funding for capital projects.

Brought in by the Ed Stelmach government in 2007, the Municipal Sustainability Initiative was supposed to provide a decade’s worth of reliable and sustainable funding for municipalities.

Other than the first two years of the program, it has been anything but reliable.

Successive provincial governments have provided less than what was expected and the program has been extended several times.

READ MORE: Alberta budget 2019 includes cuts to cities, civil servants, universities

In its October budget, the UCP government reduced MSI funding by $73 million.

Calgary city administration is recommending $60.4 million in cuts to the 2020 capital budget and using $12.6 million from capital reserves to deal with the provincial cut.

Story continues below advertisement

WATCH BELOW (Oct. 29, 2019): ‘He needs to get his own fiscal house in order’: Alberta justice minister responds to Nenshi

Click to play video: '‘He needs to get his own fiscal house in order’: Alberta justice minister responds to Nenshi' ‘He needs to get his own fiscal house in order’: Alberta justice minister responds to Nenshi
‘He needs to get his own fiscal house in order’: Alberta justice minister responds to Nenshi – Oct 29, 2019

In a report going to a strategic meeting of city council Monday, administration said: “Investment was largely maintained in service areas highest-rated by citizens for more investment: affordable housing, public transit, streets, police service and traffic flow management.”

READ MORE: Calgary city council told about impacts of provincial budget

Among the cuts being proposed are fewer new buses and LRT cars. The city had to reduce the number of new LRT cars being purchased ,meaning original U2 vehicles will still be on the tracks, leading to concerns about reliability. Those vehicles are from when Calgary’s LRT line began service in the early 1980s.

Story continues below advertisement

READ MORE: Alberta Budget 2019: Deferred provincial funding puts Calgary’s Green Line LRT ‘in jeopardy’

Also in the suggested cuts: a new fire station in the northeast will be delayed as a temporary facility will continue to be used, and an artificial turf field at Tom Brook Athletic Park is being scrapped.

There will also likely be more than $225 million of projects delayed this year and moved forward to 2021 to 2023.

Still to come later this year, administration will report to council on the impacts of the cancellation the Alberta Community Transit fund which was worth $100 million to the city of Calgary and the ending of the Alberta Community Resilience Program, that impacts $81 million of flood mitigation projects.

Sponsored content