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Huntsville posts a $217,922 budget deficit for 2023
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Huntsville posts a $217,922 budget deficit for 2023

Posted: 2024-06-27 14:46:42 By: thebay

Huntsville General Committee was informed they had a $217,922 budget deficit for 2023, in the June 26, 2024, meeting.

Director of Financial Services/Treasurer, Julia McKenzie, provided the Committee with the financial results for 2023, which included a summary of budget deviations leading to the deficit.

Examples of department budget deviations included the CAO Office at $29,090, Council $16,818, Facilities $105,168, Planning $165,230, Operations $631,601, and Fire and Emergency $183,208.

Some of the areas that helped balance the deviations because they were at a decrease with budget expenditures included Info Technology, under by $85,856, Legal Agreements $38,237, Arts, Culture and Heritage $2,700, Muskoka Heritage Place (MHP) $15,981, and Recreation and Leisure $160,950.

McKenzie indicated that the MHP generated more revenue than staff anticipated in the annual budget.

According to the staff report, the Working Funds reserve was used to cover the deficit.

As of December 31st, the Working Funds reserve was at $2.3 million, which includes transferring funds to cover the 2023 deficit, and is down from $3.1 million in 2022.

The report adds that the minimum balance of this reserve must be at least $1.2 million based on the 2023 budget.

Staff expect the 2024 reserve balance targets will be met. However, in the report they caution, “To ensure minimum amounts are maintained, future budgets should consider an increase to the annual transfer to this Working fund reserve to ensure there are adequate funds in the future.”

Mayor, Nancy Alcock, inquired about whether the new planning permit system will increase revenues in the Development department.

McKenzie advised, “The 2024 budget is based on a new structure.” She added that she believes staff is seeing an increase in applications.

Committee approved the financial results and deficits as outlined in the report.