Charlottetown officials say the city's finances are in good shape, despite the COVID-19 slowdown and related revenue shortfalls.
Earlier this year, municipal number crunchers projected the city would suffer a $2.2-million decrease in revenue, largely because people were allowed to park downtown for free between March and the end of June.
But after paid parking was reinstated for the months of July, August and September, that revenue shortfall is now estimated to be only $1.4 million.
Coun. Terry Bernard, chairperson of the finance committee, says the city plans to use funds from its extraordinary expenditures allocation to cover that shortfall and keep Charlottetown out of the red.
It's always good to have a cushion. You always have a rainy day. — Coun. Terry Bernard
"During budget time, we were showing this extra money in extraordinary expenses and some people wanted to spend it," said Bernard. "But we cautioned that it's always good to have a cushion. You always have a rainy day."
Last year, Charlottetown budgeted $1.6 million for extraordinary expenditures, but only about $100,000 of that budget was spent.
"If we hadn't had it set up, then yeah, we would probably be debating whether you raise taxes or not," Bernard said of this year's challenges.
Municipal departments were also asked to find savings where they could. By that means, Bernard said about $1.5 million was found to replenish the extraordinary expenses fund.
Those savings came in part from the fact that politicians and employees couldn't travel and some events didn't move forward because of COVID-19.
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