Draft Capital Budget for 2021

Cobourg’s Capital budget is used to pay for items that produce or repair assets.  The source of the money is indicated in the budget and is mostly not a direct charge to the taxpayer – instead, money comes from reserves (money put aside for the purpose), grants from the Provincial and Federal Governments, bank loans and other miscellaneous sources.  The totals of these sources is not provided in the budget but can be determined by adding all the numbers – so I did that.  See table below.  The other interesting thing to know about the Capital budget is what it will be spent on.  Many items are routine like vehicle replacements but others are Town improvements.  Major and significant projects are listed below but if you want a full list, see the full budget in the Links below.

Capital Budget highlights

Money Sources

Source 2021 – Draft 2020 2019
Reserves (e.g. Vehicle reserves) $3,116,600 $3,825,081 $3,485,250
Grants/ Subsidies (e.g. Gas Tax) $2,850,000 $2,361,608 $1,368,500
Debenture (that is, a loan) $2,115,000 $2,045,000 $1,705,000
Northam Park $80,000 $232,455 $385,000
Holdco $125,000
Other revenue (E.g. Dredger) $25,000 $191,600 $72,000
Levy – (direct payment by Tax) $209,000 $326,984 $154,000
Total $8,395,600 $8,982,728 $7,294,750

Notes:

  • Northam Park and Holdco sourced funds are also used for the Operating budget but no total contribution from Northam or Holdco is provided for 2021. However, Treasurer Ian Davey reported in a memo dated 5 October 2020 that: “The 2020 Town of Cobourg Operating and Capital budgets included the amounts of $428,200 and $232,455 respectively to be funded from Northam Industrial Park operations.”  That’s a total of $661K.  The total for 2021 is likely similar.
  • Debentures are of course paid back although current low interest rates minimize the amount.  For 2021, the amount paid back from taxes will be $650K.  Northam and Holdco also contribute $150K each – that is, total loan repayments will be $950K. For details of outstanding and new debt, see the Draft Operations budget starting on page 309.  I’m not sure I added it up right but I think total debt is around $20M.

Major and significant projects

Project Amount
Market Building roof $150K
New server & software $90K
Fire Station Renovations to accommodate female firefighter $230K
Pumper/Rescue Truck $350K
Traffic Signal upgrade $75K
Streetlight replacement program $365K
Downtown Streetlights (see article) $500K
Paver Stones Downtown $300K
Replace Snow Plow /Dump truck $315K
Replace Sidewalk Machine $185K
Pay & Display $21.6K
Terry Fox Stormwater Management Pond Rehabilitation $525K
Bridge and Culvert Improvements $860K
Design new boardwalk at West Beach $30K
Sanitary Sewer Rehabilitation $1M
Albert Street Reconstruction $705K
Harden Street, Harden Cresc., Sinclair St Sanitary Sewer Rehabilitation $750K
Burke, Blake, Victoria St Reconstruction $100K
King Street West Reconstruction $150K
Adult Playground – amount paid by Town $10K
Refurbish Waterfront Spray Pad $25K
Waterfront Plan East Pier $250K
Harbour Seawalls and Breakwaters $510K
Marina repairs and upgrades $137K

The projects and numbers above are for the Draft budget – that is, Council has not yet approved them.  They may even reduce the tax increase!  As mentioned in the Operating Budget Post, Council is now looking for feedback.  You can provide feedback at Engage Cobourg or you can email Councillors. Contact information is provided in the Links below.

Links

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15 Comments
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Liz Taylor
29 December 2020 2:38 pm

It will be interesting to see the Budget next year as reported previously Cobourg is unable being in surplus at end of year to apply for further COVID relief funding.

Old Sailor
29 December 2020 9:49 am

Cobourg has many sources of cash, including taxpayer assessments, reserve funds, grants, Northam, Holdco and other sources some bloggers are more familiar with. It might benefit all of us if we had a consolidated statement of budgeted and comparative prior year cash flows. It would show the detailed consolidated sources of cash, the operating cash expenses and the capital cash expenses. The bottom line on the page would be the Town’s excess or deficiency of cash generated for the year. In other words did we make an all in consolidated cash profit or deteriorate our opening consolidated cash position during the year. Otherwise, in my view, the average taxpayer needs a Ouija Board and a room full of municipal financial reporting experts to figure out how we did and where we are headed.

cornbread
Reply to  Old Sailor
29 December 2020 10:20 am

And if it were not for annual tax money from other towns and cities and provinces that bail out Cobourg every year, where would we be? We have expensive tastes in Cobourg and look to others to help pay the bills.

ben burd
Reply to  cornbread
29 December 2020 11:19 am

Would you please justify this remark with facts, like which towns give us money and for what services that we perform for them. Provinces and the Feds do not bail us out they supply money for programs that we participate in.

Ahewsonator
Reply to  ben burd
29 December 2020 11:31 am

Further to that, if Cobourg didn’t apply for the funding, it’s just going to go somewhere else. Especially true with Capital funding.

cornbread
Reply to  Ahewsonator
30 December 2020 6:48 am

Sounds just like the greedy child!

Bryan
Reply to  Old Sailor
29 December 2020 10:33 am

Old Sailor:

The statement you seek exists. It is in the Town’s audited financial statements: Consolidated Statement of Cash Flows. For 2019 (the latest available) the statement is on PDF page 10

https://www.cobourg.ca/en/town-hall/resources/Finance/2019-12-31-Town-of-Cobourg-Cons-wFS-FINAL-SIGNED-Oct-13-2020.pdf

Prior Cobourg FS can be found at:

https://www.cobourg.ca/en/town-hall/Financial-Statements.aspx

Old Sailor
Reply to  Bryan
29 December 2020 2:28 pm

Thanks Bryan. I would like to see one page of the 2021 consolidated budget presented in that format. A summary of all the other usual operating and capital details.

Bryan
Reply to  Old Sailor
29 December 2020 3:36 pm

Old Sailor,
I agree, the budget information could be presented in a more useful format with additional information.

You may also find the Town’s Financial Information Reports (FIR) interesting. Again, the latest filing is for 2019

https://efis.fma.csc.gov.on.ca/fir/Welcome.htm

I suggest the following tabs:
10 CONSOLIDATED STATEMENT OF OPERATIONS: REVENUE
12 GRANTS, USER FEES AND SERVICE CHARGES
40 CONSOLIDATED STATEMENT OF OPERATIONS: EXPENSES
53 CONSOLIDATED STATEMENT OF CHANGE IN NET FINANCIAL ASSETS (NET DEBT) AND
TANGIBLE CAPITAL ASSET ACQUISITION FINANCING/DONATIONS
54 CONSOLIDATED STATEMENT OF CASH FLOW
60 CONTINUITY OF RESERVES AND RESERVE FUNDS
61 DEVELOPMENT CHARGES RESERVE FUNDS
62 DEVELOPMENT CHARGES RATES (INCLUDING SPECIAL AREAS)
70 CONSOLIDATED STATEMENT OF FINANCIAL POSITION
74 LONG TERM LIABILITIES AND COMMITMENTS
76 GOVERNMENT BUSINESS ENTERPRISES (GBE)

cornbread
29 December 2020 8:25 am

To say the money for capital expenditures does not come from taxpayers is a lie. The money did not come from a tree. SOmewhere, somehow, a taxpayer provided the money. Assets wear out, like buses and roads and streetlights. Taxpayers eventually pay the bills.

Bryan
Reply to  John Draper
29 December 2020 9:28 am

JD,
Re ….paid by provincial and federal taxpayers….
To paraphrase Pogo (Walt Kelly): I have seen their wallets and they are us

Last edited 26 days ago by Bryan
Liz Taylor
Reply to  cornbread
29 December 2020 11:31 pm

Therefore let us control what is in our control. Sewers age, roads need repair …. I see with a further tax increase projected raises were given. If only private companies could do so when they require further funds although myself I was surprised the tax assessment (1.9% to 2.5%) was so low. Interesting to see what next year and following years will bring.
Payroll and Employee benefits is a very large ticket item.

Last edited 26 days ago by Liz Taylor
JimT
Reply to  cornbread
30 December 2020 10:45 am

Please understand: “money” these days is just binary digits in the computers of various banks including the Bank of Canada.

The government demonstrated earlier this year how they can easily put money in each of our bank accounts and just create an offsetting debit on their books to keep everything in balance. It really is that easy.

The idea that there is only so much money to go around no longer applies. It’s just a matter of not overdoing the creative handouts to the extent that it all loses its value too quickly.

Last edited 25 days ago by JimT
Ken Strauss
Reply to  JimT
30 December 2020 11:00 am

It’s really just a matter of not overdoing the creative handouts to the extent that it all loses its value too quickly.

That is a shocking perspective! So losing value slowly is OK? Maybe our currency should retain value long enough to win a majority in the next election?