Select Committee Tackles LG Finance Conundrum

The range of services provided by local governments has expanded considerably in recent decades. The dilemma facing many communities is that over this same period, the tools for financing services are largely unchanged.

Many BC local governments are examining operational budgets to find efficiencies in the face of rising costs.  While this work is essential, there is a need for a broader look at the revenue sources to assess how well they align with the services provided by local governments.  The Union of BC Municipalities has assembled a Select Committee on Local Government Finance to undertake this research.  The committee will also consider whether additional taxing authority or a change in inter-governmental transfers might better meet some of the services local governments provide.

The Select Committee will undertake inter-jurisdictional research, comparative and economic analysis, consultations with local governments, and any other work necessary or desirable to fulfill its mandate.   
The Select Committee members will include:
•    Mayor Greg Moore, City of Port Coquitlam;
•    Mayor Frank Leonard, District of Saanich;
•    Director Al Richmond, Cariboo Regional District;
•    Mayor Peter Fassbender, City of Langley;
•    Mr. Paul Macklem, Interim CAO, Regional District of Central Okanagan;
Mr. Dale Wall, former Assistant Deputy Minister for Community, Sport and Cultural Development, has also been contracted as a resource to the committee.
“We are at a stage where we need to move beyond simple solutions,” said UBCM President Mary Sjostrom.  “We need to be aware of the current climate in which we operate, and develop an approach that is well-researched, realistic and long-term.”

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