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Old 07-24-2019, 09:39 AM   #21
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Unless they’re capital GRANTS I don’t see how that could be correct. They’re taking money from other programs and services to pay for an arena. It’s all one pot.
No, they are not. The capital budget is funded through various methods (including government grants, debt, reserves, etc.). The capital budget can take on debt, it can run a surplus, and it is planned over a 5-year period.

The operating budget is net zero. It can not run debt, nor can it run a surplus. The vast majority of it comes from property tax, business tax, and revenue from goods and services sold by the city. It is planned year by year.

The capital budget is spent on infrastructure (from buildings to road repairs), buying new equipment or vehicles, or any long term investment (buying or building something expected to last more than one year).

The operating budget goes towards programs and services. It's, simply put, operating and staffing the buildings and equipment.

Because the money comes from two different places, and must be spent on two different things, it is not (in any way) taking money from programs and services to pay for an arena.
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Old 07-24-2019, 09:52 AM   #22
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In terms of cuts these seem reasonable for the most part.

I might take issue with the term 'huge' because $60M within the context of the City's operational expenditures is fairly small, but at the end of the day its a step in the right direction.

Marginally less transit service sucks, but if its negligible overall and can be absorbed thats reasonable.

Layoffs suck as does requiring current services to do more with less, but thats the nature of having to accept our new normal.
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Old 07-24-2019, 10:00 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by Leeman4Gilmour View Post
I think it's important to know, before classifying $60MM as "huge", the city operating budget for 2019 is ~$4B
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In terms of cuts these seem reasonable for the most part.

I might take issue with the term 'huge' because $60M within the context of the City's operational expenditures is fairly small, but at the end of the day its a step in the right direction.

Marginally less transit service sucks, but if its negligible overall and can be absorbed thats reasonable.

Layoffs suck as does requiring current services to do more with less, but thats the nature of having to accept our new normal.
good points. "reasonably large" it is

actually honestly why not just go with the number itself
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Old 07-24-2019, 10:14 AM   #24
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Keep in mind that overall Transit runs about 2.5 million hours of service. 80,000 hours is about 3% - while it will certainly affect some people, it likely just means they wait a little longer for their bus or train, not that it's removed.
depends on the implementation.

moving some rush hour services form every 15 minutes to every 30 might not make too much difference.

as a transit rider, going from perhaps every 30 minutes to once per hour on a residential route is pretty huge. especially in the winter, and moreso when you might have to transfer.

but you're right in that it seems like a lot, but not if I consider the total number of hours is in the millions. it probably isn't going to hurt people as much as might be feared.

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Old 07-24-2019, 10:44 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by Leeman4Gilmour View Post
I think it's important to know, before classifying $60MM as "huge", the city operating budget for 2019 is ~$4B
So just 1.5%?

Cool, let's do it again next year.
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Old 07-24-2019, 10:55 AM   #26
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No, they are not. The capital budget is funded through various methods (including government grants, debt, reserves, etc.). The capital budget can take on debt, it can run a surplus, and it is planned over a 5-year period.

The operating budget is net zero. It can not run debt, nor can it run a surplus. The vast majority of it comes from property tax, business tax, and revenue from goods and services sold by the city. It is planned year by year.

The capital budget is spent on infrastructure (from buildings to road repairs), buying new equipment or vehicles, or any long term investment (buying or building something expected to last more than one year).

The operating budget goes towards programs and services. It's, simply put, operating and staffing the buildings and equipment.

Because the money comes from two different places, and must be spent on two different things, it is not (in any way) taking money from programs and services to pay for an arena.
Its important to emphasize how inflexible these mechanisms are. Making moving money around in a bureaucracy can be frustrating, but it is necessary so that public money doesn't 'go missing' and end up somewhere is doesn't belong. It's nothing like swapping money freely between bank accounts. It's a very rigid process.
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Old 07-24-2019, 11:01 AM   #27
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https://www.thestar.com/calgary/2019...-services.html


Just a reminder who voted against these new expensive property tax increasing communities last year
-Farrell, Duh
-Nenshi, Naheed

Just a reminder who voted for these new expensive property tax increasing communities last year, while also rallying against the Olympic bid because he cares for tax payers so much
-Farkas, Jeromy
Did you account for the increased property values in inner city due to increased demand as the population of a city rises? Did you notice that the density of the new communities is higher than many of the non-inner city communities. Did you notice that Nimbys constantly oppose density increases. Did you account for whether or not in the absence of building ne communities if the Airdires / Cochranes around the areas would just increase their populations and if this would have positive or negative affect on the city's costs. Did you account for increased business taxes in areas where the people living in new communities are employed?

Without doing a real look your characterization of the new communities as "property tax increasing" fails to account for many factors in what occurs as the city grows. As Godnek says in the article you linked its easy to use the words "sprawl" and "subsidy" and make a case but it isnt that simple.

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Old 07-24-2019, 06:20 PM   #28
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I would have like to see bigger budget cuts, but this is better than nothing.
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Old 07-25-2019, 09:55 AM   #29
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https://calgaryherald.com/opinion/co...o-still-be-cut

For instance, under the title Citizen Information and Services, reorganization led to a reduction of $197,000. Appeals and Tribunals “found efficiencies to meet the budget reduction required without an impact to service,” saving $78,000. Corporate Security managed to find a savings of $280,000 through “a rigorous review of an existing service level agreement with one of our vendors. The annual maintenance fees were assessed and lowered based on this review, realizing immediate cost savings.”

Also under Corporate Security, savings of $103,000 of “efficiency was identified during a review of annual maintenance costs for security software,” says the reduction description, adding that, “this reduction will not impact any services provided by Corporate Security.”

In other words, had the crisis of enormous non-residential property tax hikes not happened, that unnecessary waste would have likely continued to happen.

Under the heading of Legal Counsel and Advocacy, $351,000 was saved “through the elimination of one growth position approved in One Calgary . . . There will be no impact on service or staff.”

On and on it goes.
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Old 07-25-2019, 09:59 AM   #30
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So a hard review of government services identified huge wastes in money? I'm shocked!!!
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Old 07-25-2019, 10:09 AM   #31
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If they had froze wages in 2015 when it was clear we were in a recession they wouldn't have had to cut much of anything.
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Old 07-25-2019, 10:11 AM   #32
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A 5% reduction in salaries and benefits would save the city $100,000,000 and not have any service reductions or job losses whatsoever.

Maybe next year.
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Old 07-25-2019, 10:16 AM   #33
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So a hard review of government services identified huge wastes in money? I'm shocked!!!
Whats really funny is when people complain about campaigns to reduce or eliminate Government inefficiencies the outcry is always about killing frontline services or people.

Government wastes money left, right and centre and that outcry is largely disingenuous.

Government's operate on the premise that money is never an object as theres always more of it and when it finally gets tight they look for more Revenue streams (taxes) as opposed to focusing inwards and determining if there are things they dont need to spend money on.

The opposite side of the ledger.

As burn_this_city alludes to, they could have been saving this money 5 years ago, they just didnt because they didnt feel they had to.

This is the kind of thing many have been clamoring for, at all levels of Government, ever since the economic downturn became painfully obvious.
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Old 07-25-2019, 11:54 AM   #34
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If they had froze wages in 2015 when it was clear we were in a recession they wouldn't have had to cut much of anything.
How does a municipality (or any employer) unilaterally freeze wages in a workplace with employees who overwhelmingly belong to collective bargaining units?
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Old 07-25-2019, 11:55 AM   #35
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Originally Posted by Locke View Post
Whats really funny is when people complain about campaigns to reduce or eliminate Government inefficiencies the outcry is always about killing frontline services or people.

Government wastes money left, right and centre and that outcry is largely disingenuous.

Government's operate on the premise that money is never an object as theres always more of it and when it finally gets tight they look for more Revenue streams (taxes) as opposed to focusing inwards and determining if there are things they dont need to spend money on.

The opposite side of the ledger.

As burn_this_city alludes to, they could have been saving this money 5 years ago, they just didnt because they didnt feel they had to.

This is the kind of thing many have been clamoring for, at all levels of Government, ever since the economic downturn became painfully obvious.
This (bolded) suggests to me that you have never actually worked in government.
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Old 07-25-2019, 12:40 PM   #36
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I think the failure in most organizations whether private or public is that there is a belief that any task currently being done is essential. To force a re-evaluation of required tasks you usually need to create a shortage of labour to force people to determine if what they are doing really adds value.
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Old 07-25-2019, 01:09 PM   #37
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$7 million cut to the police
I'm 7million percent sure that this will make a safer city due to all the speed traps they will put out to make up for this money.
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Old 07-26-2019, 10:02 AM   #38
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Its important to emphasize how inflexible these mechanisms are. Making moving money around in a bureaucracy can be frustrating, but it is necessary so that public money doesn't 'go missing' and end up somewhere is doesn't belong. It's nothing like swapping money freely between bank accounts. It's a very rigid process.
It's a concept many people have difficulty figuring out. It all might be under the same roof, but it's a restricted fund amount that can't be freely moved around and/or used for other purposes.

It's kinda like a duplex. It's the same roof, shared walls, sits on the same ground, built by the same person etc. But something that's supposed to arrive or leave unit 1 shouldn't go to or be taken from unit 2 even if the occupants inside are related. You have to keep the activities of both sides separate even if there's significant commonality between unit 1 and 2.
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Old 07-26-2019, 10:35 AM   #39
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https://www.calgary.ca/cfod/finance/...d-budgets.aspx

This shows the breakdown of the capital spending budget from 2015-2018. One of the graphs shows that the only portion that could come from property taxes is 24% from capital reserves, the purpose of which is to ensure that spending on important projects in the city continue through economic downturns.
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Old 08-13-2019, 08:24 AM   #40
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https://calgaryherald.com/news/local...nglewood-pools

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The City of Calgary has issued public notices about the slated closure of community pools in Inglewood and the Beltline at the end of this year.
Would be a real shame to lose these two facilities. So many memories of the Beltline pool growing up and they're still massively used by the public. The city hasn't built a rec center in a while, instead going with the massive YMCA complexes but these smaller more local recreation centers are a massive resource for those that use them.

Hoping another solution can be found.
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