Accelerated Financially Fit Initiative

As a community, Medicine Hat has enjoyed a long history of prosperity through revenues from commodity assets. However, with ongoing oil and gas losses, as well as additional challenges created by the global pandemic and lower transfers from the Government of Alberta, revenues continue to decline while expenses grow. The current estimated budget gap is approximately 27 million dollars. As a result, the City of Medicine Hat has launched the Accelerated Financially Fit Initiative, fast-tracking the initial effort launched in 2016.

The Accelerated Financially Fit Initiative aims to reduce costs and create a sustainable municipality that does not rely on funding from financial reserves, dividends from volatile commodity sales, or excessive property tax increases. As responsible stewards of the public purse, we need to find creative and innovative solutions, while minimizing negative impacts to amenities, programs and services that residents value.

Accelerated Financially Fit Initiative
Total Revenue (Assumed)$Millions Total Expenses$Millions 

Property Taxes

78.4

Emergency Services

43.6

Annual Subisidy (from reserves and/or dividends)

0.0

Parks & Recreation

26.5

Sales, Fees & Charges

21.2

Road/Bridge & Storm System

14.7

Grants

4.2

Cultural & Library Services

10.2

Investment Income

5.5

Corporate Services & Administration

27.4

   

Planning & Development

5.3

   

Social Services

1.6

Total

109.3

Total

136.3

  • * From commodity-based revenues and financial reserves
  • ** Assuming 0% increase in property taxes for 2020 and 2021
  • Lower than expected revenue due to COVID-19 impacts
  • Assuming 0% subsidy from commodity-based dividends

Preserving the Medicine Hat Advantage is an important consideration. We have a long history of enjoying amongst the lowest property tax and utility rates in the province, with a tremendous quality of life. However, these financial challenges are significant and there will likely be changes to service levels in some municipally-provided services. Helping the community understand this challenge will be important as we work towards a balanced future.

This effort will ensure that our community continues to thrive and remain vibrant, innovative and resilient for generations to come and our local government has balanced budgets.