Governing for the Future – How our strong financial position contributes to making Halton a great place to live

At Halton Region, we are committed to responsible, transparent financial practices that contribute to the high quality of life we enjoy in Halton. Our latest Annual Financial Report demonstrates how our sound financial planning principles ensure we have a strong financial performance year after year.

Key results in 2014 include:

  • A 97 per cent resident rating of ‘high satisfaction’ with Regional services;
  • Zero per cent average annual tax increase over the past eight years, with taxes low or at the rate of inflation;
  • AAA credit rating for the past 24 years, which is the highest credit rating possible;
  • An unemployment rate of 4.4 per cent, well below the averages for the GTA and Ontario;
  • A labour participation rate was 73.6 per cent, the highest average in the country;
  • Accommodating residential growth, providing over $2 billion in Water, Wastewater and Transportation capital infrastructure programs, without any financial impact to existing taxpayers; and
  • Extending of our landfill’s life to 2044, saving $15 million by delaying the nearly $1 billion cost of a new landfill.

All these factors show that our strong financial position ensures we can provide programs and services that contribute to the high quality of life we enjoy here in Halton.

Each year, as Regional staff prepares the Annual Budget and Business Plan, they consider not only what the needs are for the next year, but also what we will need for the future. Funding to keep our infrastructure maintained and funding to build new infrastructure required for the future are top of mind as we develop the budget each year. Our commitment to proactive planning ensures that we can meet the needs of our growing population.

The results highlighted in the 2014 Annual Financial Report demonstrate the importance of the AAA credit rating and value for taxpayer dollars. With our AAA credit rating we are able to obtain the best possible financing rates in the capital markets minimizing the longer term costs of infrastructure capital. Strategic infrastructure and service investments are keys to ensuring a high quality of life for today and tomorrow.

Both our 2014 Annual Financial Plan and 2015 Annual Budget and Business Plan are available on Halton.ca.

Governing for the future is a key strategic priority identified in Halton Region’s 2015-2018 Strategic Action Plan. A strong financial foundation and Council’s commitment to invest in and maintain infrastructure will keep Halton a great place to live, work, raise a family and retire.

As always, if you have any Regional concerns or comments you would like to share, please feel free to email me at gary.carr@halton.ca. You can also find me on Twitter
@garycarrhalton or Facebook.