Monday, January 23, 2017

Infographic: understanding how revenue the City of Langley receives is used

From time-to-time, I receive questions from people about how the City of Langley budget works. I also know that there is some confusion out there about local government financing in general.

There is easy to understand information online about how property tax rates are set, but I haven’t found the same easy to understand information online about how revenue received by local governments is translated in delivering services and building infrastructure.

To help show how Langley City’s budget works, I created the following simplified infographic.

How revenue the City receives is used. Select infographic to enlarge.

The City collects property taxes and fees. The majority of this revenue is used for providing services to people and businesses in the community. A small portion of this revenue is put into City reserves which are sort of like savings accounts.

The City also receives revenue from the Cascades Casino, federal government, provincial government, and TransLink which are put into reserves. For every new development project, the developer must also contribute to these reserves. Money is drawn from these reserves to invest in building and renewing infrastructure.

The infographic is not meant to show the edge cases of City financing, but it should hopefully provide a clearer understanding of how revenue received is turned into making things happen in our community.

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