Cobourg Budget Performance to End of Q3

At the Council’s Committee of the Whole meeting on Monday, Treasurer Ian Davey will present a report on spending in the first three quarters of 2017 compared to budget.  Council directed in a motion on May 29 that these reports be posted on the Town’s web site but they can only be found in the Town’s Portal, not the main web site.  Details on both the Operating Budget and the Capital Budget are provided – the operating budget is looking OK but very little of the Capital budget has been spent so far this year.  Below are highlights of both – note that the “Revenue” reported is not tax revenue but could be called “other revenue”.

Operating Budget

Summary – note that Ian’s original presentation showed the amount left to be spent and percent budget remaining.  The format below works better for me.  At the end of September, “On Budget” would be 75%.  So the following numbers are “favourable” overall – although some vary with the month because of seasonal factors.

Revenue Annual Budget 2017 YTD Actual % of budget
General government $183,780.00 $137,808.84 75%
Protection services $443,700.00 $425,172.09 96%
Public Works $718,000.00 $543,469.42 76%
Environmental $5,524,172.00 $4,301,267.48 78%
Parks & Recreation $2,753,857.00 $1,985,366.24 72%
Culture & Community $184,650.00 $133,762.71 72%
Planning & Residential $74,000.00 $70,662.00 95%
Commercial & Economic $1,500.00 $1,835.36 122%
Total $9,883,659.00 $7,599,344.14 77%


Expenditures Annual Budget 2017 YTD Actual % spent
General government $3,263,628.00 $2,354,536.32 72%
Protection $11,573,315.00 $8,373,628.76 72%
Public Works $4,978,826.00 $3,928,047.91 79%
Environmental $3,604,729.00 $2,261,454.59 63%
Social & Family $60,100.00 $61,155.19 102%
Parks & Recreation $6,582,776.00 $4,734,889.61 72%
Culture & Community $1,577,496.00 $1,343,474.27 85%
Planning & Residential $501,138.00 $405,222.89 81%
Commercial & Economic $636,174.00 $363,336.79 57%
Total $32,778,182.00 $23,825,746.33 73%


  • The Police Business services revenue is not included here although Police expenditures are included. I believe that is managed separately and the profit used for Police Capital projects (e.g. moving to the second floor of the Venture 13 building).
  • The net of expenditures less revenue is not reported although both numbers are reported separately.  For example, the net cost of the CCC for Q3/2017 is  ($1,548,643.79 – $893,286.48 =) $655,357.31 – that is, for Q3 YTD, user revenue paid for 58% of the cost.  (There was a full discussion of the CCC “subsidy” here – short summary: 58% is good).
  •  For more detail, download Ian’s full report here  (Operating and Capital Budgets) Ian includes explanations for variances in operating Budget expenses..

Capital Budget


  2017 Budget Expenditure % spent
General Government $306,000.00 $247,746.43 81%
Protection – Police $765,000.00 $544,543.04 71%
Protection – Fire $15,000.00 $2,699.63 18%
Roads/Sewer $4,106,020.00 $921,634.89 22%
Parks $803,000.00 $261,642.89 33%
Marina $25,000.00 $0.00 0%
Cobourg Community Centre $321,500.00 $246,159.94 77%
Concert Hall $25,000.00 $12,706.31 51%
Special Events $8,000.00 $5,773.56 72%
Community Development $30,000.00 $750.00 3%
Environmental $1,395,000.00 $208,362.51 15%
Total $7,799,520.00 $2,452,019.20 31%

Notes – significant variances

  • Roads/Sewers
    • Virtually none of the $1.7M has been spent on Kerr street – Division to D’Arcy.
    • No sidewalks were constructed in 2017 – but that’s only $100k
    • Some money has been transferred to reserves which implies that work has been done but invoices have not yet been paid.
  • Parks
    • Work has not started on James Cockburn park – $180K budgeted
    • The Waterfront Master Plan has only been partially paid for – $53K is outstanding of the $145K total.
    • A backhoe has not been paid for – $175K.
  • Environmental
    • It appears that some invoices have not yet been paid although money has been taken from reserves
  • For more detail, download Ian’s full report here. (Operating and Capital Budgets)

There are no explanations provided as to why projects have not been completed. But then it’s a financial report, not a project report.  However, the under spending is significant and at least points to projects being late.  One would hope that Council will ask for a report from the CAO on the status of these projects – that is, why has $5.3M (68%) of the Capital budget not been spent?  Surely it’s not expected it will all be spent in the last 3 months of the year?

Also on the Agenda for Monday is a request from Ian for approval of a bank loan for $4.5M to finance the almost completed Works Department Project – that is, the renovation of Building 7 and the move from the King St. facility.  If $5.3M is still available (not spent), why is a loan needed?  More clarity is needed for those of us who are not accountants. Ian says that this loan would bring the total debt of the Town to $9,550,185 and this would be 28% of the debt limit set by the Province.



At the Committee of the Whole Meeting on December 4, this report was accepted without discussion or comment.