Budget 2021

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two winter shovels - one blue, one orange

The spread of COVID-19 is creating financial challenges for people and businesses across our community. We've taken steps throughout 2020 to provide financial relief to citizens and mitigate the financial impact of the pandemic without impacting the services that residents rely on every day.

At the same time, we're still committed to advance the priorities that matter to Kitchener residents through the shared goals of our strategic plan. Through innovative thinking, community partnerships and the support of residents, we've been able to make tremendous progress towards our strategic goals.

For the average household in Kitchener, the proposed rate increases for 2021 are:

  • Property tax increase is 1.1 per cent or $12/year
  • Water utilities increase is 0.9 per cent or $11/year
  • Gas increase is 1.5 per cent or $11/year
  • Total impact - $34/year

Yearly costs estimates are based on a bungalow with an assessed average of $326,000, our current average.

This is lowest proposed increase to the average homeowner in more than a decade. To fully explain the context of our 2021 budget, we need to talk about the past, present and future. Learn more about the plan for 2021, the progress we've made and then take our survey using the tabs below. We want to know what you think of our approach.

The spread of COVID-19 is creating financial challenges for people and businesses across our community. We've taken steps throughout 2020 to provide financial relief to citizens and mitigate the financial impact of the pandemic without impacting the services that residents rely on every day.

At the same time, we're still committed to advance the priorities that matter to Kitchener residents through the shared goals of our strategic plan. Through innovative thinking, community partnerships and the support of residents, we've been able to make tremendous progress towards our strategic goals.

For the average household in Kitchener, the proposed rate increases for 2021 are:

  • Property tax increase is 1.1 per cent or $12/year
  • Water utilities increase is 0.9 per cent or $11/year
  • Gas increase is 1.5 per cent or $11/year
  • Total impact - $34/year

Yearly costs estimates are based on a bungalow with an assessed average of $326,000, our current average.

This is lowest proposed increase to the average homeowner in more than a decade. To fully explain the context of our 2021 budget, we need to talk about the past, present and future. Learn more about the plan for 2021, the progress we've made and then take our survey using the tabs below. We want to know what you think of our approach.

Strategic Progress

Our 2019-2022 Strategic Plan is a shared vision for our community, created with the people of Kitchener. We heard that our residents, businesses and community organizations want us to show Environmental Leadership, deliver Great Customer Service, support a Vibrant Economy, provide People-Friendly Transportation options and encourage our growth as a Caring Community.

This year was challenging but we have made great progress in the projects we’ve committed to under those five priorities and considered them in decision-making, guiding our response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

We organized support calls to seniors to help prevent feeling isolated during the pandemic because we are a Caring Community. We transferred dozens of City services online to safely serve our customers, and we’re hearing that many people want to continue having that option. We’ve continued to invest in energy-efficiency retrofits for our buildings and vehicles to show Environmental Leadership and  reach our emissions targets, but because and these investments are consistently paying for themselves faster than we’ve expected, saving money over the long term.

This year, our progress on strategic plan projects included:

  • The first stage of our pedestrian-first vision for Gaukel Street saw it converted to a community space with patio tables, lighting and art from local indigenous artists.
  • The Cycling and Trails Master plan was approved, laying out a ten-year plan for connecting Kitchener’s bikeways and trails
  • With a diverse advisory committee we created “Housing for All”, a human rights based Housing Strategy, to support availability and affordability across the housing continuum.
  • We approved our new Make It Kitchener 2.0 economic development strategy, a 10-year vision to guide economic development and community initiatives and presents an innovative funding model through a new Economic Development Investment Fund (EDIF) that would enable council to invest up to an additional $110 million over 10 years, without relying on a tax rate increase.

We’re proud of the ways our staff and community partners have adapted to the challenges of the pandemic and continued to deliver on the community priorities outlined in our plan. 

As we look forward to 2022 we want to know what you think about our progress on implementing the Strategic Plan Goals: Caring Community, Environmental Leadership, People Friendly Transportation, Vibrant Economy and Great Customer Service. Click on the 'take survey' tab above to tell us what you think about our progress. 

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