Ville de Gatineau
2021 budget
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2021 budget
2021 budget

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Gatineau progresse, sur tous les fronts

Good day,

As you may well surmise, this year's budget exercise was marked by the pandemic, an extraordinary situation that has had a tremendous financial impact on us. Nonetheless, with this last budget of this Municipal Council, we have found a way to move Gatineau forward.

As always, Gatineau is working on all fronts to defend the interests of our fellow residents, as it has since the start of this pandemic, and as it has through every one of the crises in the past few years.

Yet, beyond those crises, Gatineau's role as an indispensable collective tool manifests itself in several areas, maybe more than ever before: fighting inequality, fighting climate change, promoting economic development, overseeing infrastructure catch-up and driving crisis management, to mention just a few. Cities are on the front lines, and in spite of it all, Gatineau is moving forward.

The pandemic has had a significant financial impact, but thanks to the financial support provided by the government of Quebec, we have been spared the need to make cutbacks – which would be the worst thing to do in a time of crisis. As usual, we are guided by prudence and discipline.

This was not the first difficult year we have been through. If Gatineau has not buckled under the weight of all of these crises and upheavals, it is in large part because of the relentless work of our staff, and I want to thank them for this. It is because of them that we are able to keep moving forward on several fronts.

Thank you, and take care.

The Mayor
Maxime Pedneaud-Jobin

Budget highlights

A $671.5 M balanced operating budget

  • An increase of $19.7 M or 3% compared to 2020

Improvement of services to the population

Several service improvements are included in the operating budget

  • $520,000 to top up the operating budget for the newly built Donalda-Charron library in the Plateau neighbourhood (opening in December 2020)
  • $114,000 to fund the Plan de développement du plein air urbain in accordance with the funding plan approved in 2019
  • $60,000 for the proposed creation of the Office de consultation publique de Gatineau (2nd portion)
  • $125,000 to support cultural organizations (L'Avant-première – bâtiment numéro 9)
  • $175,000 to fund two additional applications of dust suppressant on unpaved roads

Protecting the environment and fighting climate change

  • $180,000 to optimize the ecocentre hours of operation
  • $420,000 to maintain eight annual bulky item collections

Fighting social inequality

  • $385,000 for the emergency assistance program for homeless families
  • $231,000 for the first structured municipal response to homelessness, with an action plan to clarify roles and allocate the appropriate resources

Promoting economic development

  • $597,000: Additional funding for the Plan stratégique de développement économique 2021-2026 and the new ID Gatineau protocol (annual investments doubled for a total of $5 M over five years) to top up Gatineau's existing economic development initiatives
  • $150,000 to fund the social economy policy
  • $100,000 for the Fonds stratégique pour les opportunités de rayonnement de Gatineau
  • $25,000 for the Marché public du Plateau

Promoting public transit

  • $3 M to maintain and improve the Société de transport de l'Outaouais' public transit service offer, Gatineau is increasing its assessed contribution by $3 M to $71.6 M

Plan d'investissements 2021-2022-2023 – Volet maintien

Total investments: $452.6 M

  • Total investments for 2021 at $133.7 M to maintain and retrofit infrastructures

The Plan d'investissements – volet maintien covers several major projects, including:

  • the redevelopment of boulevard Saint-Joseph, which was approved in 2015, has been enhanced and adjusted over the years further to consultations (underground cables, revitalization, more space for pedestrians and bicycles, etc.), bringing the total project budget estimate to $135 M;
  • the redevelopment of rue Notre-Dame has been adjusted to $44 M over the years as a result of constraints and to make it a true opportunity for revitalization instead of a mere refurbishment;
  • continued funding for interventions related to water discoloration, with total projected investments of $59.7 M by 2028, including $10.4 M from 2021 to 2023; and
  • continued funding for investments to reduce the impact of heavy rains, with total projected investments of $36 M by 2028, including $9 M from 2021 to 2023, in addition to the funds earmarked for the Wabassee creek watershed project ($56.3 M).

Investing in paving

Our annual investments in road repairs have risen by 72% since 2013, from $16 M to $27.4 M in 2020 and ongoing1.

A new strategy will also be introduced to increase investment and improve the lifespan of our roads.

  • It will result in a 10% to 15% increase in the number of kilometres of roads maintained.
  • A one-time sum of $24 M will top up investments as of 2022.

1 This amount will increase by $24.6 M over the next five years to cover work already approved under the Plan d'investissements – volet maintien.

The following envelopes have been topped up to better address needs

  • New commemorative public art program, with an additional $109,000 annually
  • Annual traffic calming measures program, with an additional $200,000 annually, for a $450,000 total envelope
  • IT development, with an additional $400,000 annually to support changing work methods (telework, etc.) for a $4.7 M total envelope

For the Plan d'investissements – volet maintien (PIVM) 2021-2022-2023, 74% of investments will be covered in 2021 (cash, dedicated tax and Programme de la taxe sur l'essence et de la contribution du Québec [TECQ]), leaving only 26% to be funded through borrowing.

Debt servicing under control

$63.9 M

  • A decrease of $830,000 or 1.3% compared to 2020
  • Representing 9.5% of the total budget

Impacts on the tax account

In order to fund all of Gatineau's services and its infrastructure investments, the budget will have to increase by $19.7 M. This tax increase is in line with the financial framework adopted by the Municipal Council further to the study by the Comité d'analyse approfondie du budget.

This will be the smallest increase since 2005 for the third consecutive year.

Ville de Gatineau has been actively involved in efforts to convince the other government levels to provide financial assistance to offset the impact of the pandemic. It is because of the assistance provided by them that Gatineau is able to comply with the financial framework adopted by the Municipal Council without reducing services or dropping infrastructure projects. An initial $29.3 M portion of the government assistance provided is applied to the 2020 budget, and the balance will cover the financial impacts of the pandemic in 2021.

Summary of 2021 revenues and expenditures

About Gatineau

Recognized for its quality of life, Gatineau is a city of 292,000 inhabitants. It is located on the north shore of the Ottawa River, and extends east and west of the Gatineau River.

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