Charlottetown Announces 2021-22 Balanced Budget

Charlottetown Announces $61 Million Balanced Budget
Posted on 03/26/2021
The City of Charlottetown released its 2021-2022 balanced budget on Friday, March 26. The City Corporation’s operational budget is $61 million, and the Water and Sewer Utility operational budget is $13.5 million.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has shown us that charting a path forward can be difficult, considering the level of economic uncertainty we currently face,” said Deputy Mayor Jason Coady, Chair of the City’s Finance, Audit and Tendering Committee. “A municipal budget is continually in flux, it is a living document that provides insight into a City’s priorities and areas of focus. With this budget, we hope to offer some degree of certainty that the level of service that our residents rely on will be maintained or in some cases enhanced.”

City Council passed the budget in Council Chambers. The address was live streamed to the public and the financial documents were made available online.

Residential and commercial municipal tax rates are being maintained at status quo, with no increases for the 2021-22 budget year. Due to the ongoing pandemic, departments were reminded that operational costs must continue to be refined and enhanced.

“In looking back at this past year, one thing is clear: though there is much that lies beyond the horizon of our influence, there is a need for a plan which balances caution and optimism,” Deputy Mayor Coady said. “We would like to assure our residents that we are continually adjusting this plan to be responsive to the ever-changing needs of our City. You hold us to a high standard, and we assure you that we are striving to meet it.”

Highlights for the operational budget include $15 million for Public Works, which includes the expansion of service areas to support our growing city infrastructure; $10.2 million for Police Services, including two new police officers to enhance public safety; $4.2 million for Fire services as the City looks ahead to the construction of the new fire station; $4.1 million for Parks and Recreation, for additions to city trails and recreational facilities; $1.4 million for transit, which will assist in bringing ridership to pre-pandemic levels; $2 million for economic development, tourism, arts, and culture – strategic investments to help the business community while working within public health guidelines to ensure events are safe; $1.8 million for Planning and development, which includes updating the City’s official plan; $518,000 for community sustainability initiatives promoting a sustainable city lifestyle; and investment in Information Technology systems to improve business and citizen engagement.

Water and Sewer Utility rates will not increase this year. Parking rate increases, initially scheduled to increase on September 1, 2020, have been deferred until September 2021, although discussions with community stakeholders about the increase are ongoing. Money collected through parking will be used to maintain and invest in future capital requirements for the parkades.

On March 10, 2021, the City’s Capital budget was passed by Council in the total consolidated amount of $80.1 million, which is an increased investment of $33 million from the previous fiscal year. The $80.1 million for capital projects includes $11.5 million for the Water and Sewer Utility and $68.5 million for the City corporation. It includes major upgrades to Parks and Recreation facilities, a new Public Works building on MacAleer Drive, paving and street improvements, traffic and pedestrian signal upgrades, the construction of Fire Station #3, the purchase of a new aerial ladder fire truck, energy upgrades, and transit investments, among other major capital injections.

During the budget address, Deputy Mayor Coady reminded the public that despite the optimism of spring, the health crisis continues. It is therefore important to continue looking out for one another, heed the orders and recommendations from the Chief Public Health Officer, and show kindness and compassion.

“It must be noted that it can be exceptionally difficult to plan in times of unexpected changes. This applies to a City budget, but on a smaller scale, we acknowledge that there are many still struggling, and that there are many families who continue to struggle to pay their rent or mortgage, and to put food on the table. Though there is hope on the horizon, the pandemic is not over; there is more to be done.”

To read the full budget address and access the City of Charlottetown’s operational and capital budget documents, visit: The City’s budget meeting and address was streamed live. The video is available at