City releases draft Budget & Business Plan for 2024

Posted on Tuesday December 19, 2023

Cambridge, Ontario. (December 19, 2023) – Today, City staff presented the Draft 2024 tax-supported operating Budget, which proposes a of 5.76 per cent increase to property taxes, or 2.07% for the City’s portion of the overall tax bill, representing $90 per year for the average household.

As a roadmap that aligns the City’s priorities and strategic actions with the services it delivers to residents, the budget is a financial plan that outlines the amount of money the City will raise and spend for the coming year.

The 2024 Draft Capital Budget represents a $167.7 million investment in new infrastructure, the rehabilitation and replacement of existing infrastructure and supports the overall growth of the City. The Draft Operating Budget also dedicates $163.5 million toward the cost of City services, excluding water and sewer services.

“I am confident that this budget balances the needs for keeping up with our infrastructure repairs and replacements while keeping an eye on future projects providing for the needs residents may have,” said Cambridge Mayor, Jan Liggett.

Recognizing the impact that high rates of inflation continue to have on households, the proposed increase is lower than the previous projection of 6.4 per cent as staff worked hard to find efficiencies wherever possible. It means that, for an increase of just under $8 per month, residents can continue to receive the programs and services they rely on every single day, while also contributing to key strategic investments including $168 million towards rehabilitation and renewal of our existing assets as well as building new assets to support future growth of the city.

“Economic recovery continues to be top of mind for cities across the country,” said City Manager David Calder. “As high rates of inflation continue to impact households and cities alike, I am proud of the efforts of our staff in finding efficiencies that allowed us to deliver a budget that minimizes the impact on residents, while ensuring the City could maintain high-quality services and contribute to key investments that will benefit our community for years to come.”

Only 36 per cent of property taxes are used to provide City services such as fire, roads, parks, recreation programs, library services and traffic & parking, with the remainder going towards services provided by the Region of Waterloo and the local school boards.

The budget is made up of three parts:

Operating Budget - Annual operations of City facilities and services, primarily funded through property taxes and user fees, excluding water and sewer.

Water and Sewer Budget - Annual operations of water and sewer distribution, funded through user rates.

Capital Budget - Capital program for all City projects, funded through taxes, water and sewer fees, development charges, debt, grants, or other reserve funds.

Many of the initiatives contained in the 2024 Budget are the continuation of important multi-year projects such as the Recreation Complex.

The Draft 2024 Budget and Business Plans are guided by the City’s Strategic Plan – Cambridge Connected. This year, Council endorsed the strategic priorities for 2024 – 2026, which will guide our financial direction over the next three years. “I would like to take this opportunity to thank our residents who participated in the budget public engagement survey and our staff who helped prepare this year’s budget,” said Chief Financial Officer Sheryl Ayres

Residents are encouraged to review the Draft Budget and register to be part of Public Delegations on Tuesday, February 6th, 2024.

Additional Resources

Information for Delegates:

  • Register to speak in person or via virtual attendance at the meeting. Registration can be completed online through the Delegation Request Form, or by contacting the City Clerk’s Office at
  • Submit written correspondence (by email) and not attend to speak at the meeting.

All meetings will be live streamed on the City’s YouTube channel.

To review the draft 2024 budget document, visit