The Regional Municipality Of York

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York Regional Council – Thursday, December 19, 2019

York Regional Council approves 2020 budget valued at $3.3 billion

York Regional Council has approved a $3.3 billion budget, the second in the four-year budget coinciding with the current term of Council.

The 2020 budget includes a net tax levy increase of 2.96%. This includes 1.7% to maintain Regional services and a further 1.26% contribution to reserves. The total increase corresponds with the endorsed outlook from the 2019 budget.

With an average assessed value of nearly $750,000 for a residential property in York Region, this increase represents, on average, an additional $75 per household.

Highlights of the budget include:

  • Record levels of spending on arterial road improvements throughout the Region's urbanized areas
  • Advancing construction readiness of the Yonge Subway Extension into Richmond Hill/Langstaff Centre – a critical link in a comprehensive transit system
  • Continuing to build and operate a fibre network to enable business attraction and retention in data-dependent world
  • Responding to technological changes, protecting resident information and improving customer experience
  • Providing consolidated access to York Region services at 17150 Yonge Street in the Town of Newmarket, resulting in long-term lease savings
  • Funding and administering more than 6,700 social housing units owned and managed by Housing York Inc. and other community housing providers

Initiatives included in the $2.5 billion operating budget:

  • $658 million to support Community and Health Services including implementing a new provincially mandated Seniors’ Dental Care Program to provide dental care to eligible seniors over the age of 65
  • $644 million to support Environmental Services including delivering 118 billion litres of clean and safe drinking water
  • $511 million to support Transportation Services including maintaining more than 4,300 lane kilometres and maximizing road networks for more than 600,000 daily travellers
  • $384 million to support York Regional Police including superior quality service to the citizens of York Region, while responding to new demands and challenges
  • $6.4 million to support Conservation Authorities: including protecting and restoring their respective watersheds

Initiatives included in the $826 million capital budget:

  • $448 million to support Transportation Services including accelerating 14 roads capital projects to address transportation needs in the busiest areas of York Region
  • $196 million to support Environmental Services including investing to increase and maintain the water and wastewater networks to meet the needs of the growing population
  • $68 million to support Community and Health Services including continuing to maintain response time targets by building and equipping response stations
  • $62 million to support Corporate Management and Governance including continuing reserve contributions to maintain and protect the Region’s capital asset base

The 2020 budget includes an updated 10-year capital plan, providing spending of $7.1 billion to 2029 and reflects the directions and strategies set out in the 2019 to 2023 Strategic Plan: From Vision to Results.

Information on York Region’s 2020 budget is available at including operating and capital budget backgrounders.

Fiscal Strategy supports a strong and financially sustainable York Region

As part of the 2020 budget, Regional Council adopted an updated fiscal strategy. Introduced in 2014, York Region’s fiscal strategy is an integrated approach to guiding the timing of the capital plan, helping manage debt and save for the future.

Under the fiscal strategy, York Region builds up reserves over time so funds are available to pay for the maintenance of its assets and other contingencies without the need to issue tax-levy or user-rate debt. Reserves are anticipated to grow to approximately $5.1 billion by 2029, of which $3.6 billion will be for future asset rehabilitation and replacement, such as roads, bridges, service facilities and buildings.

York Region uses debt to bridge the timing difference between when a growth-related asset is built and when it is paid for by development charges. To keep debt at an appropriate level, the fiscal strategy adjusts the capital plan to ensure projects, where appropriate, are built at a pace that closely matches population growth. About 70% of the Region’s outstanding debt relates to previous investments in water and wastewater infrastructure and will be repaid through future development charge collections.

The fiscal strategy significantly enhances the Region’s financial sustainability. In 2019, both Moody's Investors Service and S&P Global Ratings reaffirmed their credit ratings for York Region. The Moody’s rating remains Aaa/Stable, the highest possible. S&P’s is at AA+/Stable, upgrading the outlook for the Region from stable to positive. This allows the Region and the nine cities and towns to access to capital markets and finance debt at the lowest possible cost.

York Region is a GTA top employer

The Regional Municipality of York has once again been named one of Greater Toronto’s Top Employers by Mediacorp Canada Inc.

Several reasons York Region was selected for 2020 include:

  • Dedication to employee health and well-being
  • Supporting a culture of continuous learning
  • Promoting a diverse and inclusive workplace

Recognition as a top GTA employer is a testament to the team of over 4,000 staff who are dedicated to providing cost effective, quality services that respond to the growing needs of York Region’s communities.

For more information about working at York Region, visit or download the York Region mobile app to see available opportunities.

York Region to update Vision

Regional Council has received a memo summarizing the next steps in the corporate Vision update. Vision allows Regional Council to articulate their desired future of our communities.

Recognizing the important role residents, businesses and stakeholders play in the future of York Region, the updated Vision will combine consultation feedback from the Municipal Comprehensive Review and the Regional Official Plan, with feedback from the public and key stakeholders.

In spring 2020, staff will report back to Council with a draft Vision update.

Crime Stoppers Month

York Regional Council recognized the month of January as Crime Stoppers Month in York Region.

Crime Stoppers of York Region was founded in 1986 and since its inception has achieved 3,000 arrests and 7,400 charges laid. More than $130 million of property and illegal drugs have been seized.

Crime Stoppers of York Region is part of an international organization that involves the public in the arrest of criminals through anonymous tips and rewards. It is administered by a volunteer board of directors, which includes York Region Chief of Staff Lina Bigioni.

Regional Council celebrates a successful decade

At the final meeting of York Regional Council in 2019, York Region Chairman and CEO Wayne Emmerson thanked Council and those who served on Council over the past decade for their hard work in building strong, caring, safe communities across York Region.

Highlights from the last 10 years include:

Next regular meeting of York Regional Council

Regional Council will meet on Thursday, January 30, 2020 at 9 a.m. in the York Region Administrative Centre Council Chambers, located at 17250 Yonge Street in the Town of Newmarket.

The Regional Municipality of York consists of nine local cities and towns, and provides a variety of programs and services to 1.2 million residents and 52,000 businesses with 636,000 employees. More information about the Region’s key service areas is available at

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Media Contact: Barbara Schnier, Corporate Communications, The Regional Municipality of York
Phone: 1-877-464-9675, ext. 71237 Cell: 905-505-5775

York Region; Budget; Council; Council Highlights The Regional Municipality of York en-US Media Release