Welcome!

News Feed Item

The Fraser Institute: Vancouver City Hall Piles on Debt, Unlike Other Lower Mainland Municipalities

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA -- (Marketwired) -- 07/15/14 -- Unlike most nearby municipalities, the City of Vancouver is in the red, financially, and has been for more than a decade, finds a new study from the Fraser Institute, an independent, non-partisan Canadian public policy think-tank.

The study, Government Debt and Other Liabilities in the City of Vancouver, spotlights government liabilities (debt, employee pension obligations, etc.) in Vancouver between 2002 and 2013.

"While nearby municipalities such as Surrey and Burnaby are in the black, with their financial assets exceeding their liabilities, Vancouver has gone the other way, and has been in the red since 2002," said Charles Lammam, study co-author and resident scholar in economic policy at the Fraser Institute.

In 2012 (the latest year of comparable data), the City of Vancouver had $268 million more liabilities than financial assets, which include its cash holdings and investments, putting them in the red. Meanwhile, other Metro Vancouver municipalities were collectively $2 billion in the black.

Between 2006 and 2011, net liabilities in Vancouver more than quadrupled to $419 million from $101 million. While net liabilities decreased in 2012 and again in 2013, the decline stemmed from an increase in financial assets, not a reduction in gross liabilities.

In fact, Vancouver's gross liabilities (before accounting for financial assets) more than doubled to a record-high $1.8 billion in 2013 from $857 million in 2002.

How did this happen?

From 2002 to 2008, Vancouver's liabilities were on an upward trend. But in 2009, they took off with the city more than doubling its debt to $1.2 billion from $543 million when it borrowed $630 million to bail out the floundering Olympic Village project in Southeast False Creek. Since then, liabilities have seen moderate growth.

Moreover, Vancouver, unlike other municipalities, has the power to take on debt without permission from the provincial or regional governments.

"Vancouver city hall seems to take on debt almost at will and the city's newly proposed capital plan continues that trend, calling for another $400 million in debt. But there is a cost to all this borrowing. Governments, like the rest of us, have to pay interest in addition to repaying the principal and it's Vancouverites who will foot the bill," Lammam said.

As the city piles on the debt, the cost of servicing the debt (interest and principal) is set to rise. With more money going to servicing the debt, less is available for important municipal services such as garbage collection and policing. In 2013, debt servicing costs ate up 7.8 per cent of Vancouver city hall's budget. That number, notes the study, may increase to approximately 9 per cent by 2019.

"Vancouver city hall can take on debt more easily than surrounding municipalities but citizens pay in the end, either through increased taxes and fees or reduced services," Lammam said.

"For examples of less indebted governments, Vancouverites can only look enviously at neighbouring Lower Mainland municipalities."

Follow the Fraser Institute on Twitter / Like us on Facebook

The Fraser Institute is an independent Canadian public policy research and educational organization with offices in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, and Montreal and ties to a global network of think-tanks in 87 countries. Its mission is to measure, study, and communicate the impact of competitive markets and government intervention on the welfare of individuals. To protect the Institute's independence, it does not accept grants from governments or contracts for research. Visit www.fraserinstitute.org

More Stories By Marketwired .

Copyright © 2009 Marketwired. All rights reserved. All the news releases provided by Marketwired are copyrighted. Any forms of copying other than an individual user's personal reference without express written permission is prohibited. Further distribution of these materials is strictly forbidden, including but not limited to, posting, emailing, faxing, archiving in a public database, redistributing via a computer network or in a printed form.

Latest Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that Interoute, owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017 at the Javits Center in New York, New York. Interoute is the owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform which encompasses 12 data centers, 14 virtual data centers and 31 colocation centers, with connections to 195 add...
Building custom add-ons does not need to be limited to the ideas you see on a marketplace. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Sukhbir Dhillon, CEO and founder of Addteq, will go over some adventures they faced in developing integrations using Atlassian SDK and other technologies/platforms and how it has enabled development teams to experiment with newer paradigms like Serverless and newer features of Atlassian SDKs. In this presentation, you will be taken on a journey of Add-On and Integration ...
There are 66 million network cameras capturing terabytes of data. How did factories in Japan improve physical security at the facilities and improve employee productivity? Edge Computing reduces possible kilobytes of data collected per second to only a few kilobytes of data transmitted to the public cloud every day. Data is aggregated and analyzed close to sensors so only intelligent results need to be transmitted to the cloud. Non-essential data is recycled to optimize storage.
"I think that everyone recognizes that for IoT to really realize its full potential and value that it is about creating ecosystems and marketplaces and that no single vendor is able to support what is required," explained Esmeralda Swartz, VP, Marketing Enterprise and Cloud at Ericsson, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Interoute has announced the integration of its Global Cloud Infrastructure platform with Rancher Labs’ container management platform, Rancher. This approach enables enterprises to accelerate their digital transformation and infrastructure investments. Matthew Finnie, Interoute CTO commented “Enterprises developing and building apps in the cloud and those on a path to Digital Transformation need Digital ICT Infrastructure that allows them to build, test and deploy faster than ever before. The int...
Culture is the most important ingredient of DevOps. The challenge for most organizations is defining and communicating a vision of beneficial DevOps culture for their organizations, and then facilitating the changes needed to achieve that. Often this comes down to an ability to provide true leadership. As a CIO, are your direct reports IT managers or are they IT leaders? The hard truth is that many IT managers have risen through the ranks based on their technical skills, not their leadership abi...
The essence of cloud computing is that all consumable IT resources are delivered as services. In his session at 15th Cloud Expo, Yung Chou, Technology Evangelist at Microsoft, demonstrated the concepts and implementations of two important cloud computing deliveries: Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS). He discussed from business and technical viewpoints what exactly they are, why we care, how they are different and in what ways, and the strategies for IT to transi...
Without a clear strategy for cost control and an architecture designed with cloud services in mind, costs and operational performance can quickly get out of control. To avoid multiple architectural redesigns requires extensive thought and planning. Boundary (now part of BMC) launched a new public-facing multi-tenant high resolution monitoring service on Amazon AWS two years ago, facing challenges and learning best practices in the early days of the new service.
Niagara Networks exhibited at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which took place at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, in November 2016. Niagara Networks offers the highest port-density systems, and the most complete Next-Generation Network Visibility systems including Network Packet Brokers, Bypass Switches, and Network TAPs.
All organizations that did not originate this moment have a pre-existing culture as well as legacy technology and processes that can be more or less amenable to DevOps implementation. That organizational culture is influenced by the personalities and management styles of Executive Management, the wider culture in which the organization is situated, and the personalities of key team members at all levels of the organization. This culture and entrenched interests usually throw a wrench in the work...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Outlyer, a monitoring service for DevOps and operations teams, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Outlyer is a monitoring service for DevOps and Operations teams running Cloud, SaaS, Microservices and IoT deployments. Designed for today's dynamic environments that need beyond cloud-scale monitoring, we make monitoring effortless so you ...
My team embarked on building a data lake for our sales and marketing data to better understand customer journeys. This required building a hybrid data pipeline to connect our cloud CRM with the new Hadoop Data Lake. One challenge is that IT was not in a position to provide support until we proved value and marketing did not have the experience, so we embarked on the journey ourselves within the product marketing team for our line of business within Progress. In his session at @BigDataExpo, Sum...
Virtualization over the past years has become a key strategy for IT to acquire multi-tenancy, increase utilization, develop elasticity and improve security. And virtual machines (VMs) are quickly becoming a main vehicle for developing and deploying applications. The introduction of containers seems to be bringing another and perhaps overlapped solution for achieving the same above-mentioned benefits. Are a container and a virtual machine fundamentally the same or different? And how? Is one techn...
Keeping pace with advancements in software delivery processes and tooling is taxing even for the most proficient organizations. Point tools, platforms, open source and the increasing adoption of private and public cloud services requires strong engineering rigor - all in the face of developer demands to use the tools of choice. As Agile has settled in as a mainstream practice, now DevOps has emerged as the next wave to improve software delivery speed and output. To make DevOps work, organization...
DevOps is often described as a combination of technology and culture. Without both, DevOps isn't complete. However, applying the culture to outdated technology is a recipe for disaster; as response times grow and connections between teams are delayed by technology, the culture will die. A Nutanix Enterprise Cloud has many benefits that provide the needed base for a true DevOps paradigm.