City of Regina outlines plan to save $2.9M in 2023 budget

The City of Regina's proposed first two year budget has been met with varying feedback as taxes are set to be on the rise once again. File / Global News

The City of Regina has outlined its plan to save nearly $3 million from the 2023 municipal budget.

City administration initially proposed a 4.67 per cent mill rate increase to be included in the 2023 budget, but the final budget passed by city council in December contained an increase of 3.67 per cent.

According to the report, there are five areas the city will draw on for savings.

The city will make cuts to travel and training for city staff, consulting, salaries and benefits, and what the city has termed “alternative funding sources.”

“We will take $20,000 in savings and we will take $200,000 in savings,” said Regina mayor Sandra Masters in an interview with Global News. “It’s the idea that you form the habit of continuously looking for ways to potentially invest in something.”

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According to the city, a 25-per cent reduction in the travel and training budget is expected to save the city $500,000.

The consulting budget will also be cut by roughly 20 per cent for an approximate savings of $425,000.

The biggest savings are expected to come from operational efficiencies, including civic fleet maintenance and “fleet ratcheting,” which will reduce the number of fleet assets, according to the report. The city expects to reduce spending in this area by $784,000.

“The training that’s necessary to do the work is going to continue to happen,” Masters said Wednesday after an executive committee meeting. “It’s all coming back into the leadership table to determine.”

The total savings will come to $2,931,000.

Masters said she is pleased with how quickly the city was able to find areas to save Regina residents a few dollars.

“Every department was coming forward with ideas about where they felt there was areas to give,” Masters said.

City administration will provide council with quarterly updates on the cost-saving measures associated with the 2023 budget.

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