Budget 101

The annual Business Plan & Budget outlines how the City plans to allocate resources to deliver the programs and services residents and businesses rely on every day.

Balancing the Budget

The City is required by provincial law to balance its operating and capital budgets each year. Simply put, the money raised must balance the money spent. To balance the budget, the City can either:

  • Increase its revenue stream through raised property taxes and fees; or 
  • Manage expenses through adapting or reducing the cost of programs and services

Operating Budget

How Money is RaisedHow Money is Spent

Money is raised in two streams:

Tax rate: funded primarily through property taxes, user fees and reserves 

User rate: funded primarily from reserve funds and user fees which are intended to make the programs and services self-sustaining. These include parking, water and wastewater

Money is spent on day-to-day expenses for program and service delivery including: 

Capital Budget

How Money is RaisedHow Money is Spent
Money is raised through a combination of property taxes, development charges, debt issuance, grants and reserves.Money is spent on capital projects (PDF) designed to create, enhance or restore the service potential of the City’s significant network of assets, which include infrastructure (roads, bridges, buildings etc.), land, equipment and vehicles.

Annual Budget Drivers

Similar to a personal or household budget, the City’s budget is affected by factors beyond our control that impact the cost of a program or service:

Did You Know...

Ontario municipalities receive only 9 cents of every tax dollar raised in Ontario, while the Provincial and Federal governments receive 44 cents and 47 cents respectively. In contrast to this, municipalities own 57% of the capital infrastructure, while the Provincial Government owns 41% of Infrastructure and the Federal Government only 2%.

Barrie taxes are very comparable to other municipalities. In fact, they are in the lower end of other major southern Ontario cities. In 2023, S&P Global Ratings affirmed the City of Barrie’s 'AA+' credit rating, with stable outlook.

Frequently Asked Questions