Infrastructure planning

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Balancing investment in infrastructure for today and tomorrow.

The 2030 Infrastructure Plan outlines the City's infrastructure needs from now to 2030. The 2030 Infrastructure Plan is used to develop the 10-year Capital Plan which is updated annually to remain accurate and reflect emerging issues along with the community’s changing priorities. In turn, the 10-year Capital Plan is used to support infrastructure investment decisions in the annual budget presented to Council for endorsement each year in December.

Council endorsed the 10-Year Capital Plan forecasting the City’s infrastructure needs from 2018 – 2027. Kelowna's population is expected to grow by 20,000 over this timeframe and this plan details the infrastructure necessary to accommodate growth, improve services and renew existing infrastructure assets.

Funding the infrastructure deficit

Staff continue to explore a variety of proactive ways to fund an infrastructure deficit identified in the 10-Year Capital Plan.  Council approved the final 2019 Financial Plan on Monday, April 29. An overall tax demand increase of 4.1 percent was set, which includes revising the infrastructure levy to 2.27 percent and 1.83 percent for the municipal tax demand.This levy is one of the ways we can take action and be resourceful in investing in our future so that Kelowna continues to be a great place to live.  Read the news release to learn more about Council’s approval of the 2019 final tax increase.

What is the infrastructure deficit?

In July 2018, Council endorsed the 10-Year Capital Plan which forecasts a total general fund infrastructure investment of $1.05 billion required to renew existing infrastructure and to put in place the necessary infrastructure to accommodate growth and meet our community’s evolving service expectations. The City’s general fund is forecasted to provide funding of $573 million leaving a $478 million infrastructure deficit in the general fund.

Why is an infrastructure levy needed?

Similar to an aging house, which needs to be maintained with a roof replacement or new appliances, City infrastructure needs to be renewed to ensure service continuity.

As we evaluate our existing assets and future needs to sustain growth, we know that the funding deficit is manageable at this time and the responsible thing to do is to address it today. Over the years, we’ve improved our data collection, including with improvements to our asset management program, which keeps us better informed about the renewal needs of our existing infrastructure.

We need to be responsible and resourceful in investing to renew important community assets such as Parkinson Recreation Centre, roads, bridges and City Park to name a few examples. It is more cost effective and efficient to renew this infrastructure while we still can, rather than wait for a point where it would need to be replaced with an even more expensive new-build.

How would the infrastructure levy affect me?

The Council approved 2.27 infrastructure levy for 2019 and 2020, ongoing, means that the average home owner in Kelowna with a property valued at $684,450 will pay $45.19 for the infrastructure levy portion of their property tax bill in 2019.

What are some other funding options being considered?

Funding opportunities being looked at include, but are not limited to: Development Cost Charges (DCCs), Drainage Utility, Community Amenity Contributions (CACs) and density bonusing, user fees and public/private partnerships. In 2019 staff will continue to explore new ways of funding the deficit to maintain, renew and expand roads, parks, recreational facilities and other city infrastructure.