It’s that time of year again, budget time!
The 2019 budget and financial plan has come out and outlines how tax dollars and funding will be used.
The City of Vancouver states, that money will help maintain important services and at the same time, meet the needs of an ever changing and growing city.
“This year’s budget also includes significant investments in affordable and social housing, with focus on alleviating homelessness and poverty,” notes the City.
Short-term regulations launched in 2018 will continue in 2019 and the City expects to see more rental properties become available to residents.
The budget also noted that the City is continuing to work with authorities to help manage the opioid crisis and support those struggling with mental health issues and addiction.
The City of Vancouver states it consulted with residents and businesses for their input for City spending. Through that input, the City identified key investments for the budget, such as:
- Increase housing supply and affordability and improve availability and supports for renters and vulnerable citizens.
- Maintain and improve operations and service levels such as litter pick up on the streets and in parks and making investments in technology.
- Invest in public safety, which means hiring more police officers and firefighters. Funding for operating “a drug safe laboratory for handling of opioids and other dangerous substances” is also in place.
- Continue to build vibrant communities and public spaces that support arts, culture and the environment. A new senior centre and three new childcare facilities are also included in the budget.
- Meet commitments to provide safe and healthy workplaces and public spaces.
City Council also presented a list of their priorities for the budget including:
- Housing, affordability, and homelessness
- Safety, inclusion, and creativity
- Economic development
- Greenest city
- Value for money
The City included a five-year financial plan to the budget which consisted of increasing property taxes, increasing program fees and reducing congestion by managing on-street parking.
You can read about the entire budget here.