DAN CEARNS, The Standard
KAWARTHA LAKES: The City of Kawartha Lakes finished 2021 with a net surplus of over $7 million.
At a meeting, on Tuesday, June 21st, Treasurer Carolyn Daynes presented councillors with the annual audited financial statement and surplus disposition report. In her presentation, Ms. Daynes explained the COVID-19 pandemic played a role in the size of the surplus.
“If I was asked if that was going to repeat itself, I would say no. I think most of the reasons for the surplus are based on the pandemic,” she said. “Pandemic grants offset some of the lost revenue we had, or increased expenses in the case of Victoria Manor.”
Ms. Daynes added, pandemic closures led to a decrease in utility costs, and training costs were reduced as well because of the switch to virtual lessons. “The fact staff [members] were working from home, the office supply and the photocopy expenses were a lot less,” she stated.
Ms. Daynes then gave an early projection for the 2022 financial picture.
“We are seeing winter control expenditures are quite a bit higher than 2021,” she said. “There is a resolution on my report, as well, to bring in funds for paramedic staffing. We have seen quite an increase of call volume in the paramedic area, and we’re not 100 percent positive whether or not the ministry of health is going to advance any more pandemic funding.”
But she noted, city revenues are starting to go up. “We’re not quite up to the 2019 level, but we are certainly above the 2020 level, so there is some indication of recovery there.”
Councillors later voted to transfer portions of the surplus into several municipal reserves. In 2020, Kawartha Lakes had a surplus of $4.5 million.