On November 29, 2018, the Government of Alberta announced Bill 32, the City Charters Fiscal Framework Act. The Act legislates a new fiscal framework for the cities of Calgary and Edmonton that enshrines annual capital funding in legislation linked to changes in provincial revenue. The Act is a result of years of collaboration between the province and the two cities.
Although this announcement is to the benefit of Calgary and Edmonton, the announcement sets three important precedents:
- The fiscal framework includes funding that is linked to provincial revenues.
- The funding will allow for predictability for long-term financial planning.
- The funding is established in legislation.
These are important points we have been asking for in our discussions with the province and we will have the same expectations with respect to a new funding agreement to replace the Municipal Sustainability Initiative (MSI) for all municipalities.
AUMA has been actively working with the province over the past few weeks regarding MSI. We have brought to the table all the recommendations and information we have sourced from our members through our committees, member resolutions, and sessions at convention and our Caucus meetings. The Minister of Municipal Affairs has committed to continuing these discussions with AUMA and RMA over the coming weeks. These discussions will also involve a review of the current allocation formulas to ensure communities are receiving an equitable portion of provincial funding.
We appreciate the province’s continued engagement with AUMA in establishing a new agreement that ensures municipal funding is predictable, stable, and will grow to meet the long-term needs of Alberta’s communities. The fiscal framework announced today sets the position for other municipalities that we will expect in the new funding agreement. We expect the negotiations will conclude in early 2019 and that the agreement will be ready for implementation when MSI expires in 2021-2022.
We will continue to update you as new information becomes available.
More information about the City Charters Fiscal Framework Act is available on the Government of Alberta Website.