On March 2, 2020, London's City Council approved the 2020-2023 Multi-Year Budget which will result in an average annual tax increase of 3.9%, making it the second time the City has approved a four-year budget.
City Council also approved the Water and Wastewater & Treatment budgets with an average annual increase of 2.5% for water rates and an average increase of 3.4% for wastewater and treatment rates.
Property Tax Breakdown Calculator
The City of London's Property Tax Breakdown Calculator for the 2020-2023 Multi-Year Budget is a tool to help provide insights into how your tax dollars are spent over the four year budget approved by Council on March 2, 2020.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do you understand how your municipal budget works? We have developed a list of FAQs that will help you to better understand the budget process.
What is a Multi-Year Budget?
The Municipal Act, 2001 authorizes a municipality to prepare and adopt a budget covering a period of two to five years. The City of London has chosen to utilize a four year period. Rather than approving a budget annually, Council approves budgets for the next four years, subject to annual re-adoption, to establish funding for as many strategic initiatives as possible to support the Strategic Plan. The last year of the multi-year budget is subject to reconfirmation by the new term of Council, also ensuring any changes are linked to the Strategic Plan.
What are the benefits to a multi-year budget?
A multi-year budget allows:
- Better accountability between funding plans and costs of services to Londoners.
- Better aligns longer-term goals and objectives with longer-term funding plans.
- Provides greater certainty to residents about the future direction of their taxes.
- More efficient use of time and resources as the organization is not constantly preparing budgets.
What is an annual budget update to the multi-year budget?
An important element of the multi-year budget is the annual budget update process. It is required under the Municipal Act, 2001. Council must readopt the budget for that year and each subsequent year that the multi-year budget applies.
Annual budget updates provide Council the opportunity to change the budget for special circumstances that require funding and resource adjustments. This can be done by one of three types of budget amendments: New or Changed Regulation, New Council Direction, and/or Cost or Revenue Driver.
New or Changed Regulation - A new or changed legislation or regulation with a financial impact to the municipality
New Council Direction - A new Council direction that has transpired after the approval of the multi-year budget
Cost or Revenue Driver - A corporate or service area budget shortfall as a result of changes in economic conditions
What is an operating budget?
The operating budget outlines the City's spending plan to implement Council's goals and priorities. It is based upon service area day-to-day operations of programs and services, such as the cost of water supply and wastewater collection and treatment, transit, garbage collection and disposal, recycling, parks, arenas, recreation programs, road maintenance, libraries, policing and public health services. Examples of operating expenses include, salaries and wages, insurance, supplies, fuel and utilities. Contributions to capital reserve funds and debt servicing payments are also made from the operating budget.
What are the City's operating funding sources?
The majority of the City’s operating budget is funded through property tax revenue. Other City funding sources consist of user fees, grants/subsidies, transfers from contingency reserves and other revenues such as investment income and fines/penalties. Although these other revenue streams are vital to providing services, they are very limited in nature and frequently restricted by legislative requirements and market conditions.
What is a capital budget?
The capital budget outlines the City's capital expenditure plan and related funding for assets and related programs, such as water and sewer infrastructure, roads, arenas and parks, which will provide or support services to residents over many years. This budget pays for all new investments or rehabilitation of assets currently under the City’s control. Examples of capital expenses include roads, bridges, parks, trails, community centres, sewers and water mains. Within the capital budget and plan, there are three classifications for capital projects: life cycle renewal, growth and service improvement.
What are the funding sources for capital projects?
Funding sources for capital projects include:
- Capital Levy
- Development charges
- Other government funding
- Reserves and reserve funds, subject to adequate balances
- Debt financing, provided that all other funding sources are exhausted