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Where the SCRD budget stands now: Round 2

The Sunshine Coast Emergency planning funds fully depleted 
Close-up view of eyeglasses, calculator, pen and pie chart on top of tables and spreadsheets
Financial implications of the Round 2 discussions still to come.

In just over five and a half hours, the Sunshine Coast Regional District (SCRD) wrapped Round 2 of budget discussions for 2022, but it will still take some time before the financial implications of those discussions are tallied ahead of the financial plan’s adoption. 

The budget currently includes 16.5 full-time equivalent (FTE) positions, some of which are carryovers approved in the previous year’s budget. There are 90 new projects and 147 carry forward projects currently going forward, although that could change. The final number will be available at the budget’s adoption.

On Jan. 24, the special corporate and administrative services committee meeting saw the introduction of three new budget proposals and year-end deficits.

New proposals

SCRD staff asked for a one-time contingency of $57,200 for snow and ice removal, after various budgets were exceeded.

The Sunshine Coast Emergency planning funds have been fully depleted over the last couple of years, staff told the directors. Six emergency operations centres were activated by the regional district in 2021, and staff recommended establishing an operating reserve of $25,000 for future events.

Staff are anticipating a decline in tipping fee revenue at the Sechelt landfill, following the increase of gypsum tipping fees to $1,000 and the implementation of new compost programs. As a decrease in gypsum being dropped off has also led to a decrease in revenue, staff recommended allocating $125,000, which is the cost of testing and abatement of two loads of gypsum containing asbestos.

Some of the directors said they would prefer to see the tipping fees raised at the landfill, rather than move the cost onto taxation. Directors Bill Beamish and Alton Toth were opposed to funding the proposal through taxation. 

The budget and contracts for the landfill remediation project also increased again since the heavy rains in the fall caused “significant flooding” after the new scale building was installed and the project was almost complete. Stormwater management measures were taken.

The budget for that project will go up by $218,336 to $2,132,214, with up to $1,616,306 borrowed from the Municipal Finance Authority. Staff said another amendment is not coming forward for this project, which already saw increases after various setbacks including a protected bird species nesting in materials, and a rodent infestation. Work to open the new drop-off area and scale has been underway since sinkholes were discovered at the site in early 2020.

Directors also discussed the carryforward spreadsheet, with particular attention to the full-time equivalent (FTE) staffing hires. Directors Mark Hiltz, Toth and Andreas Tize were opposed to a budget proposal for an executive assistant with a salary of $83,987. 


There are six services in the deficit position at the end of 2021, which would result in a 0.17 per cent increase in overall taxes. The three services with deficits of more than $200 each are building maintenance services, Sunshine Coast Emergency Planning and regional street lighting. The costs - $15,000, $40,000 and $1,132 respectively - are still preliminary and subject to change before the final deficits are reported in February, the staff report notes. In opposition to funding these deficits through taxation were directors Toth, Beamish and Area A’s Leonard Lee.

Directors also chose how to use their area’s surplus, with all of the rural directors deciding to keep their economic development functions discretionary balances at the base amount of $3,000 and use surplus from 2021 to reduce taxation in 2022. 

What’s next

The budget and financial plan is expected to be adopted on February 24, exactly one month after Round 2 wrapped. The estimates of the capital and operational budgets will be included in the meeting agenda the week before the budget’s adoption. Preliminary taxation information by area and municipality will be available in early February, the SCRD’s communications manager Aidan Buckley said in an email.

More information can be found at