New report shows AB cities must rethink spending habits

Municipal spending grows 2.5 times faster than population and inflation growth

Alberta, December 24th, 2018 – The Canadian Federation of Independent Business today released its ninth edition of the Alberta Municipal Spending Watch Report which reveals that between 2006 and 2016 inflation adjusted municipal spending in the province increased 62 per cent– two and a half times faster than Alberta’s population growth of 24 per cent over that period.

The report examines 182 municipalities in Alberta with a focus on the province’s the most populated cities. Analysis shows Alberta’s cities have their work cut out to curb excessive spending (see Table 1 below for a summary of the results). Out of the 18 cities, only three ranked in the top 20 overall (with 1 being the best and 182 being the worst).

“Excessive municipal spending leads to increases in property taxes which has been a major pinch point for small business owners who have struggled through a difficult year,” said Amber Ruddy, Director of Alberta. “Current municipal spending patterns are unsustainable, and may have huge implications on the profitability of small business owners in this jittery economy,” added Ruddy.
To bring municipal spending back to sustainable levels, some of CFIB’s recommendations include: limiting spending to no more than inflation and population growth, implementing sustainable wage and benefit policies, and contracting out services to the private sector where appropriate to ensure fiscal restraint. To see the full list of recommendations and the report, click here.

For media enquiries or interviews, please contact:
Amber Ruddy, Director of Provincial Affairs

About CFIB
The Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) is Canada’s largest association of small and medium-sized businesses with 110,000, members across every industry and region, including 10,000 in Alberta. CFIB is dedicated to increasing business owners’ chances of success by driving policy change at all levels of government, providing expert advice and tools, and negotiating exclusive savings. Learn more at