MONTRÉAL, Nov. 26, 2014 /CNW Telbec/ - The Mayor of Montréal, Denis Coderre, and the Chairman of the Executive Committee, responsible for finance, Pierre Desrochers, today tabled the 2015 Ville de Montréal Budget, which stands at $4,882.6 million. Through rigorous management, the Coderre-Desrochers administration succeeded in reconciling the city's needed administrative reform and improving services to citizens.
"Guaranteeing the quality of life of Montrealers is our administration's priority. It is the principle that has guided our decisions for the past year to shape Montréal into the inspiring metropolis it must become. This must include improved public services that meet the community's expectations. That is why our budget priorities for 2015 involve a variety of services, including mass transit, the fight against the emerald ash borer, cultural events and the 375th anniversary celebrations," said Mayor Denis Coderre.
Mass transportation is one of the priorities of the administration in 2015. The city's contribution to mass transportation stands at $486 million, or 10% of the total budget. This is a $30-million increase compared to 2014.
The portion of the budget dedicated to the regular contribution to the Société de transport de Montréal stands at $409.1 million, up $25 million compared to the previous year. The Agence métropolitaine de transport will receive $63.6 million, or $8.5 million more than in 2014, to cover the costs associated with the eastern commuter train. Note that the contributions to transit organizations represent 83.5% of all the contributions paid to various organizations supported by the city.
The 2015 Budget includes $374.4 million to manage the road network. This is a $10.4-million increase compared to 2014, up 2.8%. Of this amount, $155.7 million will be used for snow removal. The budget for road maintenance has increased by more than $4 million, for a total of $136.4 million, including $4.2 million to repair potholes and cracks. A sum of $45 million has been earmarked for repairs to improve traffic and parking.
To support the city's economic recovery, an additional $2 million is awarded to the Success@Montreal program, for a total of $13 million in 2015. The city has also created an economic development department with more than $40 million earmarked for the 2015 Operating Budget.
The overall budget for water management stands at $376.9 million, up $3.6 million. The city is allocating $61.8 million for wastewater treatment. A sum of $56.7 million will be allocated to drinking water supply and treatment, while $82.3 million will be set aside for the drinking water distribution network. The city is staying the course in the fields of maintenance, repair and secondary sewer network optimization, and investing more than $50.3 million. The city will maintain its water strategy to improve infrastructure performance.
A budget of $163.4 million has been earmarked for waste management (household waste and recyclables).
A budget of $12.7 million has been earmarked for environmental projects, up 2.6% compared to 2014. This will be used to combat air, water and noise pollution, as well as for treating contaminated soil. An investment of $6.4 million is planned for the urban forest. In addition to planting trees, the city will increase efforts to curb the emerald ash borer proliferation. This is a $5.1- million increase compared to the 2014 budget. A sum of $7 million is also included in the Three-Year Capital Works Program.
The Plan d'action montréalais en itinérance 2014-2017 (action plan to combat homelessness) was introduced with a $2.4 million budget to improve the living conditions of homeless individuals and help them reintegrate into society.
The housing budget is maintained even though the Québec government will not be financing the Programme Rénovation Québec in 2014-2015. We are maintaining our requests to the government for financing in the 2015-2016 Budget.
The administration is maintaining its investment to retain families with subsidy programs for homebuyers, participation in the AccèsLogis program aimed at social and community housing, and the ACCÈS-CONDO program sponsored by the SHDM (real estate development agency).
A sum of $505.7 million has been earmarked to support cultural, recreational and sports activities in Montréal. The city will invest $72.6 million in the Space for Life recreational and tourist pole of attraction, which includes the Biodôme, Botanical Garden, Insectarium and the new Rio Tinto Alcan Planetarium. The city has also earmarked $13.4 million for the Conseil des Arts de Montréal and $5.5 million for the Pointe-à-Callière, Montréal Museum of Archaeology and History. The budget for recreational activities, which includes sports and leisure, as well as management of parks and green spaces, is up $14.7 million compared to 2014, for a total of $302.9 million. This increase includes the additional $5.1-million budget for the urban forest, $6.7-million payroll increase and financing of operating expenditures at recreational facilities, including the Saint-Laurent sports complex, sustainability of the "L'homme qui plantait des arbres" mosaiculture at the Jacques-Cartier Bridge entrance, in the Ville-Marie borough. A budget of $1.4 million is also included to operate the Montréal soccer stadium.
"Our administration did its homework by closely examining its needs and keeping in mind its ultimate goal to improve services to Montrealers. The 2015 Budget is the instrument that will help us to reach our goal, while controlling expenditures, so that each dollar invested will benefit the taxpayers," said Mayor Coderre.
SOURCE: Ville de Montréal - Cabinet du maire et du comité exécutif
For further information: Anne Roy, Press Attaché, Office of the Mayor and Executive Committee, 514 346-7598