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Orillia Council approves 2020 budget

Posted on Monday December 09, 2019
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For immediate release (Dec. 9, 2019) – Orillia Council approved a 2020 budget that accounts for significant external financial pressures and a need to invest in City infrastructure and technology.

Orillia residents will see a 3.58 per cent increase on their municipal property taxes in 2020. This means an increase of $44 for every $100,000 worth of assessment. It is anticipated that this increase will be reduced to approximately 3 per cent once the savings from the estimated provincial education tax is applied.

The City’s $61.5 million operating budget includes the new waste collection contract and rising costs from the County of Simcoe and Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit as a result of provincial downloading and the Ontario Provincial Police contract, which accounts for 1.6% of the tax increase in 2020.

The City’s $30 million capital budget, which is funded from the capital tax levy, various reserves and grant funding, focuses on infrastructure improvements, asset management, technology advancements, and sustainability.

“This year’s budget was extremely difficult to swallow. Right off the bat, we were hit with a huge surprise waste collection contract hike to the tune of $1 million. Add to that the financial pressures from provincial downloading, it felt as if we were making decisions with one hand tied behind our backs,” said Mayor Steve Clarke. “Despite being faced with significant external pressures that we have no control over, we cannot lose sight of maintaining our assets and planning for the future of our great city. By keeping this balance in mind and following lengthy and thorough deliberations, we ended up with at a 3.58 per cent increase for 2020, which is anticipated to come in lower once the provincial education tax comes into play.”

Highlights of the 2020 budget include:

  • Investments in road infrastructure including Phase 2 of the Front Street Reconstruction Project from Colborne Street East to Laclie Street including Neywash Street, Bleeker Street design and reconstruction, the annual road resurfacing and sidewalk program and doubling the contribution to the Roads Reserve in order to accelerate roads and infrastructure projects in future years.
  • Orillia Transit investments, including a smart-pay transit fare system, three new transit shelters, bicycle racks on transit buses, and increased winter maintenance at additional shelters.
  • Continued strategic investments in smarter technology including citizen self-service portal infrastructure assessment, upgrading of outdated computer equipment, LED streetlight upgrade and smart lighting controls, and digital entrance signs.
  • Servicing the Horne Business Park. This will create 10 hectares of serviced employment lands in order to facilitate future development and business attraction.
  • An additional $1.2 million contribution to reserves in 2020. In 2019 Council budgeted $16 million in reserve contributions from the tax levy

For more information on the 2020 budget, visit

The City of Orillia is a city of 31,000 people in the heart of Ontario’s Lake Country on the shores of Lake Couchiching and Lake Simcoe. Visit our website at


Jim Lang
City Treasurer

Jennifer Ruff
Manager of Communications
705-238-9209 (cell)

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