Victoria, BC–- –The Capital Regional District (CRD) Board has approved its 2017 budget and financial plan. The budget year focuses on investing in the future and supporting regional priorities, while managing costs and diversifying revenue. The Capital Regional Hospital District (CRHD) Board also approved its 2017 budget, which provides capital funding and develops healthcare infrastructure in the Capital Region.
The CRD, CRHD and Capital Region Housing Corporation (CRHC) budgets combine to form a consolidated budget. The consolidated operating portion ($284.2 million) will pay for a range of more than 200 services to over 383,000 people in the region. In addition, the consolidated capital budget targets $192.8 million in capital projects. The CRD budget 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 attached 2017 Budget Overview.
Highlights of the financial plan include:
- Continuing to support the implementation of Core Area wastewater treatment with a planned requisition increase to $20 million ($5 million increase). This follows a 2013 Board decision to budget for incremental increases to reduce overall interest expense, reduce ongoing annual debt servicing costs and provide sufficient funding for capital and operating costs. These costs may be collected via tax requisition, user fees or a combination of both as decided by the participating municipality. Construction will commence this year for the wastewater treatment project, which is also receiving up to $459 million from senior government.
- Ensuring access to park and trails through the continued development of the E&N Rail Trail, a new cycling and pedestrian trail. The CRD continues to collect an average of $20 per average residential household assessment for park acquisition.
- Providing affordable housing through the Regional Housing First Program implementation plan, approved in the fall of 2016. The CRD continues to collect $1 million to support housing needs.
- $16 million has been included for the new consolidated 911/police dispatch centre that will meet post-disaster standards and accommodate consolidated services.
- Renewing and improving drinking water and wastewater infrastructure for the region’s urban centres and local service areas, including the upgrading of the drinking water disinfection plant for the Regional Water Supply System.
- Managing wastewater and protecting local watershed and surrounding marine environment through planned upgrades to existing wastewater conveyance and treatment infrastructure for the Core Area, Saanich Peninsula and Electoral Areas.
- Investigating integrated resource management solutions and exploring the potential for infrastructure that could position Hartland landfill as a hub for renewable natural gas on Vancouver Island. $10 million has been included in the capital plan for a potential landfill gas utilization facility.
- Investing and partnering in the development of health-related infrastructure, including The Summit at Quadra Village, a 320 unit complex residential and dementia care facility. Construction of the facility is currently underway.
Overall, the CRD’s budget has two components: the operating portion, and the capital portion. The operating portion pays for the daily business of the CRD including labour costs, supplies, programs, services and repayment of debt for major projects. Operating budget is funded through a variety of sources including requisition, user fees, and grants.
The capital investment is included in an annual plan to sustain and enhance infrastructure in the region. This includes acquisition of buildings, facilities, construction of trails, and upgrades to capital assets such as water treatment plants and sewers. Capital projects are typically funded by contributions from operating, grants, reserves or by debt servicing. A list of significant capital projects is available in the attached Capital Projects List.
The 2017 Financial Plan received preliminary approval by the Board in November 2016. The plan was prepared based on service plan summaries, which are recommended for approval by various CRD Board standing committees and commissions. More information about the 2017 budget is available here.
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 www.crd.bc.ca.
For media inquiries, please contact:
Andy Orr, Senior Manager
CRD Corporate Communications