Nelson’s chief financial officer told council on Nov. 6 that its special COVID-19 budget has resulted in a surplus so far this year. File photo

Nelson’s chief financial officer told council on Nov. 6 that its special COVID-19 budget has resulted in a surplus so far this year. File photo

Nelson budget shows third-quarter surplus despite COVID-19

Results are based on a special pandemic budget prepared in the spring

Nelson’s municipal finances are on track despite the pandemic, says its chief financial officer.

At council’s Nov. 6 meeting, Colin McClure reported that at the end of the third quarter (Sept. 30) the City of Nelson’s revenue and expenses were within budget.

In April, the city interrupted its usual budget-making process and created a last-minute budget for 2020 that was geared to the pandemic and in expectation of a decrease of $830,000 in revenue.

That budget included a zero per cent tax increase, no wage increases except those required by collective agreements, a hiring freeze, and a number of other measures.


McClure told council that year-to-date (to Sept. 30) revenue was $41,490,025, with 23 per cent of the annual budget remaining.

Taxes have been billed and collected as expected by the pandemic due date of Sept. 30, with fewer tax penalties for late payment than the previous year, he said.

Transit revenues are 38 per cent lower than last year as a result of a drop in ridership and decreased capacity on buses. BC Transit did not charge fares for the first month of COVID-19.

There has been a $300,000 drop in revenue from parking meters, the parkade, the campground and the youth centre. However, for the third quarter, parking meter revenues are back to 80 per cent of 2019 levels, while the campground exceeded its revenue over last year’s third quarter.

There has been a drop in parking fine revenue as well as in patio rental fees, which were waived this year.

A revenue increase resulted from prime interest rates decreasing in response to the financial collapse caused by the pandemic. “The city’s bond fund has had a significant positive return through unrecognized capital gains as compared to last year and what was budgeted for 2020,” McClure said.

Hydro revenue sales are similar to last year, but with commercial revenues down and residential sales up.

Further details can be found here.


McClure reported that to the end of the third quarter on Sept. 30, expenses were $26,264,365, with 29 per cent of the annual budget remaining.

Environmental health expenses are up this year, he said, because of the one-time expense of the blue recycle bins and because of extra expenses due to a pandemic-related delay in purchasing a new garbage truck.

Areas affected by cost cuts were staff training and travel, the campground and the youth centre, as well as parks maintenance, grass cutting, flowers and hanging baskets in some parks.

Transit is slightly over budget this year mainly because of the extra staff time and supplies required for pre- and post-trip bus cleaning due to COVID-19. However, McClure explained that BC Transit has waived the bus lease fees for the next six months, which will result in about $100,000 in savings.

Hydro expenses are in line with the budget but slightly higher than last year because of two major storms and added vegetation management.


McClure’s report gives a long list of capital projects large and small, including the Selous Creek water upgrade, storm sewer upgrades, the decommissioning of the Lakeside hydro substation, paving projects, the new bike route, ongoing airport repairs, and engineering design work for a proposed Hall Street pier upgrade.

“Due to the timing of invoicing, approval and payment the city appears to be under budget,” McClure’s report states. “However, it is expected that this gap will be closer to budget by year end.”

Nelson creates pandemic budget plan and stimulus package

Nelson council commits to 0% tax increase for 2020

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
Interior Health reports 70 new cases overnight

The total number of cases in the region is now at 1,426

Chief Paul Burkart presented Nelson Police Department budget numbers to city council on Nov. 23. Photo submitted
Nelson police ask council for 1.9 per cent budget increase for 2021

Almost 90 per cent of police budget is for wages

An employee of the Adventure Hotel was taken to hospital on Nov. 20 after she confronted a customer of Empire Coffee about not wearing a mask. File photo.
Nelson hotel employee suffers heart attack after being assaulted in anti-mask incident

An accountant at the Adventure Hotel is in hospital in Kelowna

Group fitness classes are on hold at the Nelson and District Community Complex. File photo
Group fitness classes cancelled at Nelson, Salmo rec centres

Parking enforcement is also coming to the Nelson and District Community Complex

A man wearing a face mask to help curb the spread of COVID-19 walks in downtown Vancouver, B.C., Sunday, Nov. 22, 2020. The use of masks is mandatory in indoor public and retail spaces in the province. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. records deadliest day of pandemic with 13 deaths, 738 new COVID-19 cases

Number of people in hospital is nearing 300, while total cases near 30,000

The COVID-19 test centre at Peace Arch Hospital is located on the building’s south side. (Tracy Holmes photo)
B.C. woman calls for consistency in COVID-19 post-test messaging

‘Could we just get one thing straight?’ asks Surrey’s Deb Antifaev

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

(File photo)
Alberta woman charged after allegedly hitting boy with watermelon at Okanagan campsite

Police say a disagreement among friends at an Adams Lake campsite turned ugly

Court of Appeal for British Columbia in Vancouver. (File photo: Tom Zytaruk)
B.C. woman loses appeal to have second child by using late husband’s sperm

Assisted Human Reproduction Act prohibits the removal of human reproductive material from a donor without consent

Krista Macinnis displays the homework assignment that her Grade 6 daughter received on Tuesday. (Submitted photo)
B.C. mom angry that students asked to list positive stories about residential schools

Daughter’s Grade 6 class asked to write down 5 positive stories or facts

B.C. projects targeting the restoration of sockeye salmon stocks in the Fraser and Columbia Watersheds will share in $10.9 million of federal funding to protect species at risk. (Kenny Regan photo)
13 projects protecting B.C. aquatic species at risk receive $11 million in federal funding

Salmon and marine mammals expected to benefit from ecosystem-based approach

Barrels pictured outside Oliver winery, Quinta Ferreira, in May. (Phil McLachlan - Black Press Media)
B.C. Master of Wine reflects on industry’s teetering economic state

Pandemic, for some wine makers, has been a blessing in disguise. For others, not so much.

Most Read