Alberni’s surplus accounted for

The city has $10.2 million parked in its reserve accounts, a report from city finance director Cathy Rothwell noted.

City councillors requested the report on the status of city reserve funds at their April 11 meeting.

The statutory reserve fund has a balance of $8.1 million, while the unrestricted reserve fund has $2.1 million.

There is 17 per cent less money is reserve accounts this year than at this time last year, Rothwell noted in her report.

Two things account for the depletion.

“Not as much money was put into reserves as in previous years,” Rothwell said.

“And money has been earmarked for several large projects in 2011.”

Those projects include $$680,000 for two automated garbage pick up trucks, $500,000 for the Echo Centre HVAC system, as well as $227,000 for storm and sewer drain work.

Coun. Jack McLeman asked on Monday where the $3.3 million in the tax loss reserve fund went.

The amount is shown but not reflected in the final balance total, McLeman said.

The amount was included in the city’s 2010 budget, Rothwell said.

She undertook to produce a report on the issue, and did so on Wednesday.

A reserve fund was established to offset the $3.3 million in tax money Catalyst initially didn’t pay, Rothwell said.

To cover the subsequent funding shortfall the city transferred money from other accounts and borrowed from its line of credit.

Catalyst did pay later, however.

Following this development, the city re-stocked its operating reserve with $1.4 million, replenished the accounts it borrowed from with $1.7 million  and repaid its $880,000 loan.

The total accounts for the $3.3 million, Rothwell said.

Under the Community Charter, city council may, by bylaw, establish reserve funds for specific purposes.

Municipalities are mandatorily required by the community charter to have statutory reserve funds.

Unrestricted reserve accounts are funds that can be used as required by council.

Money in reserve funds – including interest – can only be expended by bylaw, and only for the purposes for which the fund was created.

Once tax rates are set the city budgets for a certain amount to go into reserves.

The city also sets aside $500,000 to cover unforeseen expenses, Rothwell said.

Reserve funds are similar to an emergency personal savings account.

“You never know what’s going to happen in the future,” Rothwell said.

Just Posted

Hay bales and high fives for Port Alberni soapbox derby

New track on Lower Argyle Street gets a thumbs up

Brush fire breaks out near Taylor Arm Park

Fire forces partial closure of Highway 4 west of Port Alberni

Rosalind Chapman seeks seat on Port Alberni city council

Community volunteer and longtime Alberni Valley resident Rosalind Chapman will seek a… Continue reading

Accident causes power outage on Beaver Creek Road

One sent to West Coast General Hospital in crash

Inside the music: step behind the curtain at the venerable Vancouver Island Music Festival

Big Read: VIMF in the Comox Valley exemplifies the spirit of an Island summer music festival

BC Games: Day 3 wrap and closing ceremonies

The torch in the Cowichan Valley has been extinguished as Fort St. John gets ready to host the 2020 BC Winter Games

Police confirm girl, 8 others injured in Toronto shooting; shooter dead

Paramedics said many of the victims in Danforth, including a child, were rushed to trauma centres

Why do they do it? Coaches guide kids to wins, personal bests at the BC Games

Behind the 2,300 B.C. athletes are the 450 coaches who dedicate time to help train, compete

Government sets full-time salary range for Justin Trudeau’s nanny

At its top range, the order works out to a rate of $21.79 per hour, assuming a 40-hour work week

Lower Mainland teams battle for baseball gold at BC Games

Vancouver Coastal squeaked out a 3-2 win against Fraser Valley

The Northern Secwepemc te Qelmucw people signed an agreement-in-principle with the B.C. government

The signing ceremony, at the Eliza Archie Memorial School, was 25 years in the making

Canada to resettle dozens of White Helmets and their families from Syria

There are fears the volunteers would become a target for government troops

Francesco Molinari wins British Open at Carnoustie

It is his first win at a major and the first by an Italian

Recovery high schools could help teens before addiction takes hold: B.C. parents

Schools could provide mental health supports and let parents discuss their children’s drug use openly

Most Read