Premier Scott Moe announced on Monday, February 4 that Saskatchewan municipalities will see an overall funding increase of more than $10 million for 2019-20, bringing the total amount to $251 million next fiscal year for the municipal revenue sharing program.
The announcement was made while Premier Moe addressed the Saskatchewan Urban Municipalities Association (SUMA) at their Annual General Meeting.
The additional $10 million in 2019-20 represents a four per cent increase from the current fiscal year, following a review of the program and consultation with municipal stakeholders that began in 2018 and resulted in a new predictable, sustainable and transparent formula.
“Municipalities across Saskatchewan will continue to have a consistent source of unconditional provincial revenue to invest in their local priorities,” Moe said. “The adjusted revenue sharing formula recognizes our current fiscal reality, evolves this key provincial program, and retains the fundamental qualities of predictability, sustainability and transparency.”
The municipal revenue sharing formula will now be based on three quarters of one point of the provincial sales tax (PST) revenue collected from the fiscal year two years prior to the current year.
“SUMA is pleased that today Premier Scott Moe announced municipal revenue sharing will increase to $251 million for 2019-20,” Saskatchewan Urban Municipalities Association President Gordon Barnhart said.“Through extensive consultation with the government, we believe the adjustments to this program will be a benefit to all of our members.We are also happy to see the continued commitment to stable and predictable funding, something that our municipalities appreciate and count on.”
“We appreciated the opportunity to provide input around revenue sharing consultations,” Saskatchewan Association of Rural Municipalities President Ray Orb said. “Having predictable funding on an annual basis only benefits our members when it comes to planning for the future.”
“New North is happy that the provincial government is increasing municipal revenue sharing this year,” New North Chair Bruce Fidler said. “Our members depend on this program for predictable funding, and we are pleased with the Premier’s announcement today.”
The program will also see $1.5 million from the total Municipal Revenue Sharing amount co-managed with municipal partners to invest in initiatives that support good governance, capacity building and regional planning.
“It just makes sense to cultivate potential innovative ideas that can help improve services at the local level that are so important to everyone’s quality of life,” Government Relations Minister Warren Kaeding said. “I also want to thank the municipal sector for all of its perspectives and thoughtful contributions, which enhanced the review of the program.”
From 2007-08 to the current fiscal year, Saskatchewan municipalities overall have received more than $2.6 billion in provincial funding through the revenue sharing program.
More details will be available when the provincial budget is released.