Rocky View County (RVC) has produced another multi-million surplus.
On May 26, the county reported a $6,018,087 operating surplus in its 2019 audited financial statement.
In addition, $13 million from the sale of its old administration building was added to the reserve. The county had borrowed $10 million from the reserve for its new building and replaced that plus an additional $3 million.
Surplus funds go into the county's tax stabilization reserve that enabled the county to reduce its property taxes by three per cent for 2020. Funds in the reserve are available for RVC council’s general use.
This past fiscal year, RVC had total assets of over $136 million in cash, investments, and receivables. The county spent $4.2 million in debt servicing in 2019, leaving just over $99 million in liabilities, putting Rocky View County in a strong fiscal position, with net financial assets of nearly $37 million.
Reeve Greg Boehlke says the surplus and their financial position hasn't come by accident.
"Rocky View has made conscious decisions to get where we're at today. This didn't just happen by accident. Council and administration worked together to forge Rocky View into being a powerhouse in the region, and in the province."
"We strive hard to be fiscally responsible, and that's just good proof of how administration and council are controlling our spending."
"The fact is, we've achieved the ability to put money away in a situation where we have one of the lowest residential and business tax rates in the province. So we attract people to live here to a good tax rate and we're still able to, through control of our spending and good business practices, to have money that goes into reserves."
The county of 40,000 people is a net contributor to the Calgary region, believes Boehlke, and aren't recognized as such by neighbouring urban municipalities.
He says they supply 20,000 jobs and contribute more in school education tax than the City of Airdrie and Town of Cochrane combined. They also have 100 agreements with surrounding municipalities to contribute to recreation, fire, and social services.
"We are a net contributor to the region and we don't get recognized as such. We've been painted by our urban brothers as hard to get along with, tough to deal with, and that we don't pay our way."
He says Calgary officials act like a big dog trying to shake a big stick when they criticize developments like the Cross Iron Mall, located in Rocky View County and just outside of Calgary. Boehlke says Calgary officials simply don't like the competition.
"We've got to where we're at because of competition, and because we weren't afraid to reach out. We've become a tax-friendly and business-friendly area. I'm proud of Rocky View and I'm proud of what we've done."
In 2018, the county had a $6,950,341 operating surplus.
The county’s 2019 audited financial statements will be posted on their website once a final copy is received from their auditors.