Building a Stronger Winnipeg Together

The City of Winnipeg is preparing its 2017 budget, and wants your feedback on budget priorities, preferences, and ideas!

Until October 30, you are invited to participate online!

Building on last year's budget engagement, the City of Winnipeg is continuing to create new and improved ways of working together to build a stronger city.

Winnipeg is a growing, thriving city, and needs to plan for population growth that is going to create increased demand on existing city infrastructure and services, as well as a need for new infrastructure and expanded services. LetsTalk gives you an online forum to make your voice heard about how to best manage and budget for a growing city.

With your feedback, the City of Winnipeg can build a stronger, better Winnipeg together with you.


The 2017 Budget Consultation process is NOW CLOSED. We thank all the participants who shared their stories, provided their input and feedback and contributed to the conversation.  Please continue to visit for updates regarding the 2017 City Budget.

City Services & Budgets

The City of Winnipeg is responsible for providing services, programs and projects that support your quality of life. These can be basic services such as public safety, water, transportation and roadways or a more diverse range of opportunities for living, working and playing.

Budgets are an important tool to guide and focus the time, money and resources associated with City services and programs.

When budgeting, the City isn’t just thinking about tomorrow, next month or one year down the road.  Over the next 25 years, Winnipeg's population is estimated to increase by 8,200 people per year, and by 2034/35 Winnipeg's Census Metropolitan Area population is projected to exceed one million people. Planning for this growth needs to happen today!

In addition to addressing today’s needs, budgets need to also consider future generations’ social, economic, and environmental well-being.

The City budget is made up of two components – the operating budget and the capital budget. The capital budget represents a finite amount of money to be invested in specific projects - much like you would budget for a big purchase like a house or a car. The operating budget is where the money to keep things running on an on-going basis is represented - like keeping the lights on in your house or food in your fridge.

Under The City of Winnipeg Charter, the City of Winnipeg is legally required to balance its budget, and is not permitted to run a deficit.

Where does the money come from to support the operating budget?

How is the money generated chart

How does the City of Winnipeg currently spend its operating budget?

% of budget allocated by service cluster

The Challenge

The City of Winnipeg is currently facing a $52 million deficit in its operating budget, and is facing an infrastructure deficit estimated to be over $7 billion.

Addressing these challenges means finding ways to reduce spending, increase revenues, or both.

As well, the gap between forecasted spending and revenues for future budgets is growing at a rate of $35 million a year.


Tax supported operating budget forecast chart


These budgetary challenges didn’t happen overnight. The gap between service needs of today, and how financial investments and decisions have been made, has been slowly growing over the last 10 years.


So How did we get here?


The City of Winnipeg has comparably high residential property taxes relative to other Canadian cities.


The City begins freezing property taxes (and therefore revenue received.)


Property taxes are either cut or frozen. By the end of the period the City has an overall 6% property tax revenue reduction.

Over the last 17 years other cities have increased their property taxes by approximately 4% per year whereas Winnipeg has averaged 0.4%/year.

Propery Tax increases in Western Cities

  1999-2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 1999-2015
Vancouver 28.7% 8.0% 1.2% 5.8% 2.0% 2.0% 2.8% 2.0% 1.9% 2.4% 57%
Edmonton 30.3% 5.0% 7.5% 7.3% 5.0% 3.9% 5.4% 3.3% 4.9% 5.7% 78%
Calgary 30.0% 2.6% 4.5% 5.3% 4.8% 5.0% 6.0% 5.5% 5.0% 4.5% 73%
Saskatoon 24.0% 4.8% 5.4% 2.9% 3.9% 4.0% 4.0% 5.0% 7.43% 5.34% 67%
Regina 16.9% 3.9% 2.8% 0.0% 4.0% 4.0% 3.9% 4.5% 5.9% 3.9% 50%
Winnipeg -6.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 3.5% 3.9% 2.95% 2.3% 6.7%

Source: Compiled and derived by the City of Winnipeg using cities’ websites and budget books.

But the city still grew and tax-supported expenditures increased by $163 million.


So now what?

Provide the City of Winnipeg your ideas and priorities on how to address the growing gap between revenues and expenditures. The City of Winnipeg is looking for your help to build a stronger Winnipeg together!


If you have questions or would like to connect with our project team please contact: