Welcome to Edmonton’s 2016 – 18 budget. This site describes the budget in detail, so you can understand how money is collected and how it is spent. Here you will find the updated adjustments made for the 2018 budget year, to be debated before council in December 2017. You will also find out what we do every year to closely monitor costs and ensure we are meeting the commitments made to residents.

What’s New

Since 2010, our city has saved more than $300 million by using technology more effectively and improving operations. That’s millions reallocated or used to fund new programs that did not need to come from tax increases. For 2018 alone, our city has identified almost $47.5 million in savings with $27.9 million of that reallocated to fund other high-value services and programs.

You can read more about some of those savings here.

The Budget So Far

As the budget moves along, so does our thinking. Often times new discoveries are brought to light, and we adjust appropriately. In the midst of our 2016-2018 budget cycle, we have made adjustments for the 2018 budget year based on changing economic conditions and the evolving needs of our city. Be sure to check back regularly to keep up with new details on the City’s budget and related information.


Our goal is to maintain a level of transparency that’s meaningful and impactful to you, the citizen. By taking such actions, we are accountable to the people we serve.

Twice a year the City does an update to ensure we are on track with our budget and that information is shared at City Council meetings, open to the public. The City’s Chief Economist provides regular economic updates with the reports presented to Council and copies are made available online. Anyone interested in closely following the city’s economy can subscribe to Economic News, a monthly newsletter from the City’s Chief Economist.


Understanding Edmonton’s Budget
This document is a summary of the City’s 2016-18 budget. If you’re looking for a better understanding of how the City of Edmonton is managing your tax dollars, this is a great place to start.

Understanding Edmonton’s Budget

Full Budget
This is the City’s 2016-18 budget in its entirety. The budget summary above does a good job of distilling the information in this 800+ page document, however, you may want to learn more.

Full Budget

You can find even more information about the City of Edmonton’s budget at the main budget sites:

Operating Budget

The Operating Budget pays for the everyday workings of and interactions with the City. Whenever you talk to a City employee on the phone, pull over for firefighters rushing to an emergency, see a Council meeting on the news, renew your pet licence or read a City publication—this is the Operating Budget in action.

The City of Edmonton’s Operating Budget projects the revenues and guides the spending for our civic services and programs. These are essential to the operations of our city and include police, fire rescue, snow clearing, pothole repair, libraries, park maintenance and recreation centres, as well as many others. The Operations Budget ensures that we have lifeguards, accountants, librarians, detectives, engineers, city planners, bylaw officers, receptionists and a host of other employees to make the City work for you.

The City of Edmonton does not budget for a deficit or plan for surpluses. The taxes we collect are required to provide the essential amenities and level of service that Edmontonians expect from our prosperous, growing city.

Right now the City is in the third year of its 2016-2018 three-year budget cycle. The 2018 Fall Supplemental Operating Budget Adjustment is an opportunity to adjust forecasts made a year ago, with updated information that reflects new economic conditions and changes in demand for city services. For more information, please visit our site for the operating budget.

Capital Budget

The Capital Budget pays for everything we build, refurbish and renew. When we build new recreation centres, replace bus engines to extend their life, lay down new LRT tracks or repave the road in your neighbourhood, that’s the Capital Budget.

Past Capital Budgets have addressed key growth and renewal priorities. And as we progress into a new Capital Budget, we are doing so on the heels of unprecedented investment in key infrastructure and improvements like public transit, neighbourhood revitalization, libraries, fire and police protection, new parks and recreation buildings, and bridge construction — all benefiting Edmontonians and meeting the needs of our transforming city.

In order to maintain Edmonton’s momentum, we must carefully focus on what we need to invest in most while we build the infrastructure we’ve already approved and committed to, such as the Valley Line LRT.

As new capital projects continue to be built, the budget must also grow. We’ve dedicated $9.7 billion over the last 10 years and the City has dedicated approximately $4.5 billion on infrastructure projects for the 2015-2018 Capital Budget cycle.

Read more about the 2015-2018 Capital Budget here.


The City of Edmonton is growing rapidly with tens of billions already invested in its public infrastructure. Maintaining current and creating new public infrastructure is essential to fostering a growing, prosperous economy and is a key factor in attracting and retaining talent and business in Edmonton. To keep pace, our city must make the right investments at the right time.

In order to maintain this balance, the reasonable use of debt is an important part of how Edmonton builds what we need today and protects the infrastructure investments we’ve already made. Edmonton is growing too fast to wait on funds from other orders of government or until we save enough to pay for necessary major projects like bridges or expanding LRT.

However, like a homeowner, the City must determine how much of its revenue can be tied to making debt payments. While the Municipal Government Act sets limits the City must follow for both total debt and debt servicing (principal and interest payments on debt), the City of Edmonton—by policy—chooses to be more conservative than the Act allows.


Projects that debt has at least partially financed for the city since 2004:

City-Building Projects


  • Metro Line LRT (Downtown to NAIT)
  • Valley Line (Mill Woods to Downtown)
  • 41 Avenue – Gateway Boulevard Interchange
  • Whitemud Drive – upgrades


  • Terwillegar Community Recreation Centre
  • Clareview Community Recreation Centre
  • The Meadows Community Recreation Centre
  • Commonwealth Community Recreation Centre
  • Valley Zoo


  • Clareview Library


  • Northwest Police Campus


  • Natural Areas Reserve
  • Neighbourhood and District Park development


  • Rogers Place and associated infrastructure
  • Blatchford development
  • Quarters redevelopment
  • Shaw Conference Center upgrades


City Rebuilding Projects


  • Walterdale Bridge Replacement


  • Recreation/Leisure Center enhancements at Kinsmen and Central Lions facilities
  • Fort Edmonton Park Rehabilitation
  • Southeast Multi-tournament site remediation
  • Victoria Golf Course enhancements


  • Recreation/Leisure Center enhancements
  • Fort Edmonton Park Rehabilitation
  • Southeast Multi-tournament site remediation
  • Victoria Golf Course enhancements



For comprehensive information about how the City uses debt, read our debt whitepaper.

Waste Management Budget

Waste Management Services collects, processes and disposes garbage, recycling and other waste products through the delivery of an integrated waste management system. Our city is a global leader in waste management, with one of the most efficient and innovative systems in the world. As with Drainage, Waste Management is not funded from your property taxes. It is funded by utility rate revenue and revenue from programs like the sale of recycled commodities.

In 2018, a typical household will pay $45.93 per month for waste management as part of their annually set utility rates.

Waste Management Revenue

Of the revenue for Waste Management, 81.2% comes from the rates customers pay through their utility providers. The City of Edmonton sets these rates annually to cover the costs of this service. The remaining 18.8% comes from other revenues.

Waste Management Expenses

Because the City operates Waste Management on a break-even basis, all of the expenses from Waste Management come through the delivery of the service itself.

FACT: Edmonton’s new Waste-to-Biofuels facility (a partnership of the City, the Province and Enerkem Alberta Biofuels) is an example of a forward-thinking improvement of City operations. For the same cost as storing it in a landfill, this facility can create a useable product by diverting solid waste from the landfill and converting it into methanol, a multi-use fuel. By 2016, the facility will be processing 100,000 tonnes of waste into methanol.

Process & Timeline

Oct 14
Non-Statutory Public Hearing on proposed 2017-2022 rates for EPCOR water and wastewater treatment.
Oct 27
Public release of the proposed 2017-2018 Operating and Capital Budget Adjustments for Utility Services on edmonton.ca.
Nov 4
Utility Committee consideration of 2017 Waste Management and Drainage Utility rates.
Nov 18
Public release of proposed Operating and Capital Budget Adjustments on edmonton.ca. City Council consideration of proposed Utilities (Waste Management and Drainage) rates, and Operating and Capital Budget Adjustments.
Nov 29
2017 Supplemental Operating Budget Adjustment presented to Council.
Dec 8
Non-Statutory Public Hearing on proposed Utilities rates and the proposed Operating and Capital Budget Adjustments.
Dec 9
Council discussion and approval of supplemental budget adjustments.
Dec 13
Council discussion and approval of supplemental budget adjustments.
Dec 14
If required: Council discussion and approval of supplemental budget adjustments.
Assessment notices are mailed to property owners.


This is your budget and your city. We’d like to hear from you.