Capital and operating financial plans approved for 2021

Mar 24, 2021

Victoria, BC– The Capital Regional District (CRD) and the Capital Regional Hospital District (CRHD) Boards have approved their 2021 Financial Plans at the March 24 Special Board meetings. An amendment of $150,000 has been added to the final CRD budget to establish a regional service for planning, developing and funding performing arts facilities that have regional impact.

The CRD, CRHD and Capital Region Housing Corporation (CRHC) financial plans combine to form a budget with a 1.76% increase overall for 2021. The proposed combined operating portion ($356 million) will pay for a range of regional services and sub-services to over 418,000 people in the region. The proposed combined capital portion targets $352 million in projects. The Financial Plan impact is unique for each municipality, electoral area and First Nation as each participates in a different set of services. An overview is available in the 2021 Consolidated Budget Overview.

The CRD is required by legislation to develop a financial plan each year that represents operating and capital expenditures for the next five years. These plans provide a longer-term focus regarding the resources required to deliver programs and services needed by the community, and to accomplish Board priorities.

In October 2020, the Board approved several amendments to the CRD provisional Financial Plan. Amendments include $75,000 for inclusion of First Nations elected representatives on CRD standing committees as well as an increase to the Land Acquisition Fund (LAF) of $1 per year per average household, raising an additional estimated $193,000 for park land acquisition in 2021. The LAF generates approximately $3.8 million per year for park land acquisition and has acquired over 4,800 hectares of park land since it was established in 2000.

The CRD has maintained critical services and infrastructure throughout the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, and continues to provide reliable and essential services that play a significant role in economic recovery for the region. Many CRD services are vital to community well-being and the vast majority of CRD operations maintained service levels by implementing new measures to address health risks and safety.

The Financial Plan incorporates the delivery of work and execution of priorities and initiatives that were identified in the third year of a four year planning cycle for the CRD and as part of the strategic and corporate plans. Approval of the Financial Plan enables the organization to effectively deploy resources needed to maintain core service delivery and advance capital projects required to support development and population growth across the region.

The operating portion of the CRD Financial Plan pays for the daily business of the CRD in advancing Board strategic priorities, including labour, supplies, programs, services and repayment of debt for major projects. For 2021, the operating portion includes revenues and expenditures of $296 million, an increase of $15.8 million or 5.6% compared to the 2020 CRD Financial Plan. The plan supports Board and corporate priorities from the strategic plan approved with initiatives targeting community needs.

For 2021, revenue from sale of services comprises nearly half (47%) of the CRD’s operating revenue, while requisitions make up approximately 25%. The balance is funded from a variety of other revenue sources including grants.  

The capital portion of the CRD Financial Plan pays for new and enhanced infrastructure, including renewal and replacement of existing structures. This includes acquisition of buildings and facilities, as well as construction and upgrades to assets. For 2021, the capital portion includes revenues and expenditures of $284 million, a decrease of $115 million or 28.9% compared to the 2020 CRD Financial Plan. The capital plan is expected to generate 1,394 jobs in the region through the flow of goods and services among various industries. A list of significant capital projects is available in the CRD Major Capital Projects.

Highlights of significant capital projects include:

  • Implementation of the Regional Housing First Program continues with the opening of Hockley House, a 120-unit affordable housing project now renting in Langford. In addition, 97 units are expected to break ground in late spring on CRHC’s Michigan Square redevelopment in Victoria, and 75 units on M’akola Housing’s Charters development in Sooke are now under construction.
  • The Panorama Recreation Centre energy recovery project is approved and requires a minimum of $700,000 of grant funding to proceed. Staff are pursuing all grant funding options available and are targeting a 2021 start with anticipated completion in 2022. Once completed, Panorama is projected to see an 80% (351 tonne) reduction in total GHG emissions produced.
  • $2 million has been allocated for the Hartland North Site Buffer Acquisition project. This property will be used as a vegetative buffer between the landfill and surrounding forested area in accordance with BC Landfill criteria requirements.
  • $4.3 million will go towards rock extraction at Hartland Landfill and processing of material for on-site use as daily cover and building access roads.
  • Construction continues on Phase 3 of the E&N Rail Trail with a capital cost of $3.4 million in 2021. This section of trail will fill a gap between the railway crossing on Atkins Avenue and Savory School in Langford, creating a continuous 13 km trail between Jacklin Road in Langford and Esquimalt Road in Victoria. Completion of this section is expected in Spring 2021. The CRD is working with the City of Victoria on planning and design for Phase 4, the section of trail that will link Esquimalt Road and the Johnson Street Bridge. Construction is currently planned to begin in 2021.
  • As identified in the Gulf Islands Regional Trails Plan, the first regional trail segment to be developed in the Gulf Islands is Phase 1 of the Mayne Island Regional Trail at a capital cost of $1.2 million in 2021. This 2.3 km bike and pedestrian trail will be developed between Village Bay and Miners Bay village. The CRD’s Engineering Services and Regional Parks divisions will oversee the development of the trail. Construction is anticipated to start in 2021 and be completed in 2023.
  • The development of an in-lake remediation plan is underway to address internal sources of nutrients in Elk/Beaver Lake, subject to receiving at least 50% capital grant funds for the project. This includes the installation of oxygenation systems in Elk/Beaver Lake to improve water quality at a capital cost of $1.4 million and ongoing operational costs of $100,000 -$150,000 annually. Staff continue to pursue external funding and partnership opportunities to support this proposed work.

For 2021, the CRHD major capital projects contribution is $28 million, minor capital projects is $3.75 million, and equipment is $2.95 million for a total of $34.7 million. Major projects planned for the CRHD in 2021 include several Urgent and Primary Care Centres in Greater Victoria and the Lady Minto Hospital emergency department. Demolition and remediation is also underway at the Oak Bay Lodge property while planning continues for future use of the site.

The 2021 CRHC budget, approved in December 2020, includes $24 million in operating expenditures and $33 million in capital planning. Drivers for the 2021 budget include staffing, increases in insurance premiums and deductibles, replacement reserve contributions and new buildings in their first year of operations. The CRHC portfolio includes 50 buildings and 1,893 units. Development planning will continue on the CRHC’s 158-unit Caledonia development in Victoria.

Financial plans are the products of a rigorous strategic, corporate and financial planning process spanning many months, starting in May of the preceding year. Service planning drives the financial planning process and provides necessary information to evaluate overall organizational requirements, new initiatives, proposed service levels and implications for the budget and financial plan.

Through Board direction, the Electoral Area Committee reviews and recommends all electoral area-only service budgets, including the review of Local Service Commission budgets. This process includes a significant amount of work undertaken by many commissioners who volunteer their services in the Southern Gulf Islands, Salt Spring Island and Juan de Fuca electoral areas.

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Proud to be recognized as one of BC’s Top Employers and Canada’s Greenest Employers, the CRD delivers regional, sub-regional and local services to 13 municipalities and three electoral areas on southern Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands. Governed by a 24-member Board of Directors, the CRD works collaboratively with First Nations and all levels of government to enable sustainable growth, foster community well-being, and develop cost-effective infrastructure while continuing to provide core services to residents throughout the region. Visit us online at


For media inquiries, please contact:
Andy Orr, Senior Manager
CRD Corporate Communications
Tel: 250.360.3229
Cell: 250.216.5492