Penticton City Hall. (File photo)

Penticton City Hall. (File photo)

Cuts help balance Penticton’s COVID-19 budget

City staff expecting revenue and expenses to come in $4.3 million below 2020’s budget

Penticton will be coming in under budget for revenues and expenses for 2020.

Despite COVID-19 causing a reduction of revenue for the city, the reduction in costs caused by the pandemic won’t leave the city in the hole according to the Nov. 3 financial update provided to council by city staff.

The city originally had a budget of $81 million for the year, but with COVID-19 is expecting to come in at $4.3 million below that figure for the end of the year.

The budget is expected to be balanced, with reductions to revenue offset by a combination of reductions in expenses and transfers to reserves.

In the reduction of revenue for the city, the largest hit was to the gaming revenue from Cascades Casino.

With the casino closing earlier this year, and predicted to remain closed for the rest of the year, the city is expecting to only receive $340,000 from their predicted $2 million this year.

READ MORE: COVID-19 delivers $1.6 million hit to Penticton’s reserves

Recreation revenue also saw a significant decline of $1.32 million, largely due to the community centre being fully closed from March through to August, and the restrictions in service since then. With the physical distance and other safety requirements, the city is expecting 55 per cent lower budgeted recreation revenue.

Parking revenue is expected to be 55 per cent lower, due to the free street parking, as well as fewer fines and pay station usage. Planning application fees are also expected to see a 50 per cent reduction for 2020.

In the Nov. 3 financial update, the city also laid out the expense-saving measures that were put in place to offset the loss in revenue.

The city made $1.71 million in payroll reductions, with 44 full-time and 46 part-time employees laid off during the pandemic. The report noted that the majority of the full-time employees have been recalled to various levels.

With the expected drop in casino revenue to $340,000, the city also reduced the planned transfer to the gaming fund from 1.8 million down to 306,000. The other $34,000 of casino revenue going to the Penticton Indian Band as required.

Other reductions included fewer event grants being issued, a reduction to the city’s contribution for Ironman for 2020, reducing the hours that City Hall is open and other restrictions.

In May, 2020, city staff had presented a financial forecast with a $8.1 million reduction of capital spending through deferring certain capital projects. Those projects will instead be included in the 2021 capital budget.

Planning for the 2021 budget is expected to begin planning in Nov, with community engagement currently expected to be open on Nov. 16 and 18.

City staff are expecting revenue to remain low in 2021 and are taking that into account when building a balanced budget.

To report a typo, email: editor@pentictonwesternnews.com.


@PentictonNews
newstips@pentictonwesternnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Municipal Government

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A man wearing a face mask to help curb the spread of COVID-19 walks in downtown Vancouver, B.C., Sunday, Nov. 22, 2020. The use of masks is mandatory in indoor public and retail spaces in the province. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
104 new COVID-19 cases in Interior Health

IH is reporting the new numbers since Friday, Nov. 20

7-year-old Mackenzie Hodge from Penticton sent a hand-written letter to premiere John Horgan asking if she’d be able to see her elf, Ralph under the new coronavirus restrictions. (John Horgan / Twitter)
Elf on the shelf an acceptable house guest, B.C. premier tells Penticton girl

A 7-year-old from Penticton penned a letter asking if she’d be allowed to see her elf this year

Last year’s Toys for Tots and Teens was a huge success as was high school driven . Because of COVID restrictions, it can’t happen this year but organizers, including high school students, have come up with a two-week campaign called Penticton Provides. (submitted)
Pen High’s 10,000 Tonight food drive cancelled, replaced by bigger ‘Penticton Provides’

New campaign of caring during COVID will go from Nov. 26 to Dec. 10

The Peach is adhering to the mandatory mask protocols put in place by the Provincial Health Officer on Nov. 19. (Monique Tamminga Western News)
Masks required at all Penticton facilities, including the gym and pool

New provincial order requires masks at all public facilities

Penticton Search and Rescue along with the Penticton Fire Department located and airlifted an injured 21-year-old female hiker Sunday, Nov. 22, 2020. (Mike Biden photo)
Penticton search and rescue airlifts injured hiker off mountain

There has been an unprecedented amount of calls for search and rescue this year

People wearing face masks to help curb the spread of COVID-19 cross a street in downtown Vancouver, on Sunday, November 22, 2020. The use of masks is mandatory in indoor public and retail spaces in the province. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. reports 17 COVID deaths, 1,933 new cases as hospitalizations surge over the weekend

There are 277 people in hospital, of whom 59 are in ICU or critical care

An aerial shot of Cedar Valley Lodge this past August, LNG Canada’s newest accommodation for workers at the project site in Kitimat. This is where several employees are isolating after a COVID-19 outbreak was declared last Thursday (Nov. 19). (Photo courtesy of LNG Canada)
Forty-one positive COVID-19 cases associated with the LNG Canada site outbreak in Kitimat

Thirty-four of the 41 cases remain active, according to Northern Health

A concept rendering of the proposed Costco at the corner of Baron, Leckie and Springfield roads. (WSP Global)
Contentious Kelowna Costco relocation moved to public hearing

Costco looking to move less than a kilometre away to build a larger store with more parking, gas bar

Workers arrive at the Lynn Valley Care Centre seniors home, in North Vancouver, B.C., on Saturday, March 14, 2020. It was the site of Canada’s first COVID-19 outbreak in a long-term care facility. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Rapid tests ‘not a panacea’ for care homes, Dr. Bonnie Henry says

B.C. lacks capacity for daily tests of thousands of workers

(Delta Police Department photo)
Cannabis edibles found in Halloween bag lead B.C. police to illegal lab

Delta police arrested a man and a woman while executing a warrant at a residential property Nov. 20

RCMP pictured at a motor vehicle incident during snowy conditions. (Phil McLachlan - Black Press Media)
B&E, stolen car in Vernon lands Whitehorse man in cuffs

Suspect takes off on foot in attempts to evade arrest

Salmon Arm RCMP nabbed two Calgary suspects in an allegedly stolen vehicle on Highway 1 on Nov. 22, 2020. (File photo)
Salmon Arm RCMP use spike belts on Highway 1 to nab Calgary suspects

Arrests occur after Revelstoke RCMP clock allegedly stolen vehicle going faster than 160 km/h

RCMP stayed with the vehicle until it was towed to a secure lot. (Black Press file photo)
Armoured truck carrying millions of dollars crashes near Princeton

The incident occurred after the truck hit an elk on the road

Most Read