2021 Budget

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Thank you for engaging in developing the City's 2021 Budget.

Your contributions will help inform City Council's decision when it sets guidelines for the creation of the draft 2021 Budget.

At this early stage in the 2021 Budget process, we're asking residents about their budget priorities and about what City programs, projects and services are important to them. For this year's consultation, we're also asking residents to share their ideas on how the City should invest the money from the sale of Peterborough Distribution Inc.

With the COVID-19-related cancellation of in-person, drop-in meetings during the first phase of our consultation on the 2021 Budget, we're re-opening the online survey from May 5 to May 18, 2020 to provide another opportunity for public input. We'll be reporting back to the community through a "What we heard" report to share the input gathered through the consultation.

On this page, you'll find key dates, contacts, and resources to learn more about the budget as well as various ways to share your ideas and feedback.

2020 Budget


Thank you for engaging in developing the City's 2021 Budget.

Your contributions will help inform City Council's decision when it sets guidelines for the creation of the draft 2021 Budget.

At this early stage in the 2021 Budget process, we're asking residents about their budget priorities and about what City programs, projects and services are important to them. For this year's consultation, we're also asking residents to share their ideas on how the City should invest the money from the sale of Peterborough Distribution Inc.

With the COVID-19-related cancellation of in-person, drop-in meetings during the first phase of our consultation on the 2021 Budget, we're re-opening the online survey from May 5 to May 18, 2020 to provide another opportunity for public input. We'll be reporting back to the community through a "What we heard" report to share the input gathered through the consultation.

On this page, you'll find key dates, contacts, and resources to learn more about the budget as well as various ways to share your ideas and feedback.

2020 Budget


  • 2021 Budget guideline

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    28 Jul 2020

    Council approved the 2021 Budget guideline on Monday, July 27, 2020, providing direction for the development of the City's Draft 2021 Budget, which will be presented to Council in November 2020 before holding a public meeting to get feedback from the community and then deliberating on the draft budget documents.

    Instead of providing a guideline of a target all-inclusive property tax increase for the typical homeowner, Council asked staff to return with information splitting out essential services, discretionary services, and services that the City isn't required to deliver as well as comparisons with other municipalities and opportunities for cost reductions.

    To maintain existing services levels would be $5.8 million (that cost includes $2.8 million directly related to impacts from COVID-19) and providing additional capital funding of $2 million would result in a $7.8-million budget increase, which would require a 5.14% increase in the all-inclusive property taxes for a typical homeowner. Staff had recommended a 3% all-inclusive (municipal, education and sewer surcharge) increase, which would still leave a shortfall of $3.8 million in funding that would be needed to maintain existing service levels. During its General Committee meeting, Council didn't support setting a guidelines with a 3% increase for 2021.

    "Staff are very cognizant of the taxpayer’s ability to pay, particularly in these unprecedented circumstances," staff state in the report to Council. "Presenting a budget that meets the guideline will have to involve a critical review of user fees and opportunities for new revenues, a more detailed review of escalating costs and opportunities to reduce them and potential service cuts."

    Council had supported asking staff to report back to Council to seek up to an additional 0.5% all-inclusive increase if the Province and federal government announce stimulus funding as part of their COVID-19 pandemic recovery plans and a municipal funding share is required to access those funds for projects.

    Council also endorsed that the annual earnings from investing the proceeds from the sale of Peterborough Distribution Inc. be directed toward enhancing funding for capital spending, such as repairing infrastructure.

    Council requested reports from staff to Finance Committee on various items, including:

    • potential savings that could be achieved based on a KPMG review of Social Services;
    • maintaining City funding to Peterborough and the Kawarthas Economic Development Corporation, the Downtown Business Improvement Area, the Peterborough Humane Society, the Peterborough Family Health Team Network, and the Innovation Cluster at 2020 levels in 2021;
    • directing that no new staff positions be added in 2021 unless they are self sustaining;
    • options on potential actions to achieve savings and efficiencies in the transit operations budget;
    • the impact of raising user fees by 5% to 10% in 2021; and
    • information on zero based budgeting.

    To help inform the setting of the 2021 Budget guidelines and the development of the Draft 2021 Budget, the City consulted with residents through public drop-in sessions as well as a survey on community priorities. A What We Heard report on the results from the budget survey is available online at peterborough.ca/budget.

  • Draft 2021 Budget Guidelines report

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    24 Jun 2020

    Council is considering setting a guideline of a 3% all-inclusive (municipal, education, sanitary surcharge) increase for a typical property taxpayer in 2021.

    A recommended guideline would be considered by the Finance Committee on July 13, 2020 with approval of the direction expected at the regular Council meeting on July 27, 2020.

    The cost to maintain existing services levels would be $5.8 million. That cost includes $2.8 million directly related to impacts from COVID-19. Additional capital funding of $2 million would result in a $7.8-million budget increase, which would require a 5.14% increase in the all-inclusive property taxes for a typical homeowner. The recommended 3% increase would leave a shortfall of $3.8 million in the funding needed to maintain existing service levels.

    "However, staff are very cognizant of the taxpayer’s ability to pay, particularly in these unprecedented circumstances," staff state in the report to Council. "If this guideline is approved, presenting a budget that meets the guideline will have to involve a critical review of user fees and opportunities for new revenues, a more detailed review of escalating costs and opportunities to reduce them and potential service cuts."

    Between February and May, the City undertook consultation on community priorities to inform the development of the 2021 Budget. Feedback from the consultation is outlined in a What We Heard report that’s available at peterborough.ca/budget.

  • Re-opening of 2021 Budget survey

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    06 May 2020
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    Peterborough, ON – With the COVID-19-related cancellation of in-person, drop-in meetings during the first phase of the City of Peterborough’s consultation on the 2021 Budget, the City is re-opening an online survey to provide another opportunity for public input.

    This year, the budget survey on community priorities also includes a section on how the City could invest the proceeds from the sale of Peterborough Distribution Inc., which was approved by the Ontario Energy Board last week. The City is expected to receive $50 million to $55 million in revenue from the sale after debt and other expenses.

    The budget survey is available at connectptbo.ca/2021budget. It is re-opened from May 5 until 9 p.m. on May 18, 2020.

    “We hope everyone is staying safe and healthy in these difficult times. The Budget Roadshow is moving online. Fill out the short survey to share your ideas and comments on community priorities as we start to prepare the City’s 2021 Budget,” said Councillor Dean Pappas, the City’s Finance Chair.

    “We know the personal, community and economic impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic are going to continue to be felt in our community as residents and businesses recover from the emergency. With the extremely challenging financial situation, your input can help Council decide on setting priorities with our limited resources.”

    Council members can also be reached directly by email or phone with their contact information available at peterborough.ca/citycouncil.

    A report with recommendations on guidelines for the drafting of the 2021 Budget is expected to be presented to City Council in June 2020.

    Results from the community consultation will be reported back to the community through a What We Heard report, which will be provided to Council for its consideration ahead of setting the 2021 Budget guideline. A separate report specific to investing the proceeds from the sale of Peterborough Distribution Inc. will also be presented to Council.

    The Budget Roadshow got underway with the first of five scheduled informal drop-in sessions on March 5, 2020 before the World Health Organization declared the COVID-19 pandemic on March 11, 2020. The provincial and local declarations of emergencies related to the COVID-19 pandemic led to the cancellation of the remaining Budget Roadshow drop-in sessions.

    The budget survey was previously open from February 25 to April 16, 2020 with 262 responses.

    The draft 2021 Budget is expected to be presented to Council in the fall with additional opportunities for community engagement before Council considers final approval of the budget in December.

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  • Launch of 2021 Budget consultations

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    27 Feb 2020

    Join the conversation to help shape the setting of priorities for the City of Peterborough’s 2021 Budget with a community survey and a series of drop-in sessions over the next two months.

    Both the survey and the drop-in sessions include opportunities to share ideas and provide comments on how the City could invest the proceeds from the sale of Peterborough Distribution Inc., which is expected to generate $50 million to $55 million in revenue after debt and other expenses.

    The Budget Roadshow drop-in sessions are informal opportunities to talk with Council members, City staff, and other residents about community priorities to assist with planning for the 2021 Budget.

    The survey is available online at connectptbo.ca. Hard copies of the survey will be available to fill out during the drop-in sessions. The survey closes at 9 p.m. on Thursday, April 16, 2020.

    Budget Roadshow drop-in sessions

    • Thursday, March 5, 6 p.m. to 7 p.m., Fire Hall 3, 839 Clonsilla Ave.
    • Thursday, March 12, 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., James Strath Public School multi-purpose room, 1175 Brealey Dr.
    • Cancelled - Thursday, March 26, 6 p.m. to 7 p.m., Peterborough Public Library multi-purpose room, 345 Aylmer St.
    • Cancelled - Thursday, April 2, 6 p.m. to 7 p.m., Peterborough Museum and Archives museum classroom, 300 Hunter St. E.
    • Cancelled - Thursday, April 9, 6 p.m. to 7 p.m., Riverview Park and Zoo meeting room, 1300 Water St.

    The Connect Peterborough online consultation hub at connectptbo.ca will be used for other engagement opportunities throughout the budget process.

    Results from the consultation will be reported back to the community through a What We Heard report, which will be provided to Council for its consideration when setting the guidelines for the development of the 2021 Budget. A separate report specific to investing the proceeds from the sale of Peterborough Distribution Inc. will be presented to Council, including information from the community consultation.

    Recommendations on the budget guidelines will be presented to Council’s Finance Committee meeting on Monday, June 8, 2020, which will be followed by a formal meeting with public delegations on the budget guidelines on Wednesday, June 24, 2020. Council approval of the budget guidelines is expected on Monday, June 29, 2020.