City council was presented with Moose Jaw’s third-quarter financial report on Monday night as the year comes closer to an end.
Total revenues saw the city take in over $51 million as of Sept. 30, which is about 98 per cent of the 2021 budget. It is also an increase from 2020.
Municipal taxation is about $609,000 above budgeted levels due to favourable outcomes when it comes to assessment appeals.
Those getting behind on their property taxes are starting to catch up. Property taxes in arrears are down about $30,000 from 2020 and payment plan arrears are down by nearly $300,000.
“We have had fairly good success in terms of the payment plans and people meeting those payment plans, so that has had an impact,” said Director of Financial Services Brian Acker.
“Unfortunately, going forward, you'll notice in the report that our current payment plans are actually lower than the previous year, so we've sort of ran through those where people have caught up and paid, but we now have a number of other citizens which we do need to work with to get payment plans in place.”
Federal grants and subsidies are up over $2.2 million compared to last year, but that is the result of the one-time federal COVID-19 Restart Funding.
Parks and Recreation revenues are ahead of 2020’s figures, but behind budgeted levels due to the pandemic and decreased arena revenue.
Total expenditures of the city as of Sept. 30 was $41.5 million, or 79 per cent of the budget.
While it might seem like a small percentage for this time of year, Acker said it is on track compared to previous years.
“If we go back to a normal year, which would have been 2019 at the same point in time, we're sitting at 80 per cent in expenditures. So, in terms of our overall expenditures were tracking the pretty much in line with where we would expect to be,” he said.
Recreation and Community Services was the hardest hit as expenditures are up $2.2 million from last year, which is 80 per cent of the recreation and community services budget. Those areas ahead of 2020 levels include Parks and Recreation administration, Recreation Services and third-party funding to Mosaic Place.
Mosaic Place’s financial statements showed a grim picture due to the pandemic. Out of the 115 events budgeted to take place at the venue, only 27 events actually happened. There were 75 event days budgeted, but 33 actually happened.
Mosaic Place has achieved zero per cent of its budget when it comes to attendance paid, general attendance, club seat attendance and suite attendance.
I guess my only comment would be I really hope this is the last time we'll see this much red ink on this income statement, and that as we move into 2022 and the next four quarters that that reading starts to turn black again,” said Coun. Heather Eby.
As 2021 begins to wind down, city council will begin 2022 budget deliberations on Thursday as they hear third-party funding group presentations.