Tuesday, July 23, 2024

City of Montreal reports modest surplus despite decrease in revenue and increase in spending

Montreal City’s Financial Review Shows Barely Breaking Even in 2023

Montreal’s financial situation has been a hot topic of discussion lately, with the city barely breaking even last year. Chair of the executive committee Luc Rabouin recently presented the city’s annual financial review, revealing a $187.6 million surplus on a $6.9 billion budget for the 2023 fiscal year. While a surplus may sound like good news, Rabouin emphasized that it was the lowest in the last decade and only half of what it was the previous year.

Rabouin attributed the tight surplus to factors such as high inflation, economic slowdown, and a decrease in real estate sales. He likened the situation to finishing a $100 grocery trip with only $2.80 left in your pocket, emphasizing that while it’s better than nothing, it’s not a substantial reserve. The surplus will be allocated towards emergency reserves for special weather events and debt management, with the remainder divided between the boroughs and the agglomeration council.

To prevent a tighter surplus, Montreal implemented a hiring freeze and spending cuts last October, saving $115.7 million. However, Director General Serge Lamontagne noted that a few more heavy snowstorms could have drastically altered the city’s financial situation. Rabouin stressed the need for the city to review its spending to ensure efficiency.

Looking ahead, Montrealers may face challenges as the Plante administration aims to find new ways to generate revenue following a decrease in inflation rates. Saint-Laurent borough mayor Alan DeSousa expressed concerns about the city’s spending habits, warning of potential service cuts. Opposition members criticized the timing of the financial review’s release, citing a lack of transparency.

As the city council prepares to meet, Rabouin acknowledged that the year ahead will be “difficult.” While it’s too early to predict December’s financial outlook, Montreal must navigate carefully to maintain financial stability. Stay tuned for updates on Montreal’s financial journey in the coming months.

Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is for informational purposes only and should not be considered as financial advice. The content is based on general research and may not be accurate, reliable, or up-to-date. Before making any financial decisions, it is recommended to consult with a professional financial advisor or conduct thorough research to verify the accuracy of the information presented. The author and publisher disclaim any liability for any financial losses or damages incurred as a result of relying on the information provided in this article. Readers are encouraged to independently verify the facts and information before making any financial decisions.

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