City of Calgary finished 2020 with a $98M cash surplus


After a year of hand-wringing that it might wind up with a deficit, the City of Calgary finished 2020 with a cash surplus of $98 million. It achieved that on the back of more than $200 million in federal and provincial support which helped with its operating costs during the pandemic. Revenues were down significantly last year due to the major loss of ridership on Calgary Transit and the fact that many city recreation facilities were closed due to COVID-19 health restrictions. City officials were concerned that Calgary might fall as much as $200 million into deficit last year unless there was help from other governments. Municipalities in Alberta are typically not allowed to run deficits. But if they do as a result of special circumstances, they’re supposed to advise the province how they intend to balance their books. The city’s deficit forecast did moderate as the year went on. It cut spending by $65 million, including the layoff of more than 1,200 employees, primarily in recreation.

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