The City of Saskatoon released a budget update Monday at a special meeting of council’s governance and priorities committee.
The report shows expenditures sitting at $7.9 million above revenue. It would take a property tax increase of about 3.89 per cent to cover that shortfall.
Last year saw a 3.96 per cent tax hike. The 2015 budget saw an increase of 5.33 per cent.
Overall, the update showed the city bringing in about $10 million in new revenue. That includes $3 million in new assessment growth — which is significantly down from previous years. City manager Murray Totland told council lower assessment growth was a sign of the economic slowdown affecting the city.
Administration also reported that the city will receive about $2.4 million less in transfers from the province.
On the expenses side, inflation was the biggest driver of new costs at $7.6 million. 2017 is the last year for the dedicated road levy, which will take up about $3.9 million. A further $1.1 million is earmarked for improvements to the snow and ice removal program.
The report leaves out some potential expenses, like ongoing construction of the new civic operations centre off Dundonald Avenue.
The administration’s update is considered preliminary, meaning all estimates could change by the time the city’s final budget and business plan is presented to council in November.