Long-term financial planning is a way to demonstrate that the planned capital and operational requirements for service delivery, as identified in the City of Guelph’s Strategic Plan, service master plans and various action plans, remains affordable and achievable when you pull them all together.
The City’s Long-term Financial Framework (LTFF) guides the development of long-term financial planning. A central collection of corporate fiscal policies to support the implementation of the LTFF principles of sustainability, vulnerability and flexibility and the City’s annual financial reporting now reflects these metrics.
The City’s budget and forecast is built using long-term funding strategies and tools to manage the vast volume of priorities in a growing city like Guelph. Guelph presents the capital budget with a 10-year outlook and the operating budget will show a four-year outlook. New this year, the City will be seeking budget approval of the first multi-year budget with a two-year 2022/23 Budget.
Long-term planning in Guelph continues to mature and evolve with increasingly more sophisticated ability to model our financial performance into the future. We are changing the culture of City budgeting, moving away from a one-year view to a more transparent and strategic four- and 10-year perspective. Council, as the board of directors, will make service level decisions with a full understanding of the tax and rate impact on the community.
This multi-year operating budget view has already proven its value by demonstrating the affordability concern with the pace of investment to meet our Strategic Plan objectives while still maintaining core service delivery.
A special Council Budget Workshop on October 18, 2021 provided the opportunity for Council to explore the concept of prioritization and pace of the Strategic Plan investment while considering affordability.