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Regional Council unanimously approves 2013-14 budget,
increases priority services 

Tuesday, April 30, 2013 (Halifax, NS) - Today, Halifax Regional Council unanimously approved the 2013-14 operating and project budgets for the Halifax Regional Municipality (HRM). The $823 million gross operating and $165 million gross project budgets include a tax rate decrease of one per cent for the commercial general rate, no increase to the transit tax rate, and a nominal increase of one per cent for the residential general rate, to accommodate the removal of area rates to provide sidewalk snow clearing in all HRM urban communities.

The general rates of taxation on residential property will be set at:
• $0.668 for the urban area
• $0.635 for the suburban area
• $0.629 for the rural area

The general rates of taxation on commercial property will be set at:
• $3.054 for the urban area
• $3.054 for the suburban area
• $2.691 for the rural area

Tax rates associated with transit tax will be set at:
• $0.051 for the Regional Transportation tax rate
• $0.105 for the Local Transit tax rate

“Council approved a budget that keeps taxes relatively flat as we appreciate the many demands on our citizens and businesses and we do not want to add to those challenges,” said Mayor Savage. “The new budget captures various efficiencies to help manage unavoidable spending increases from inflation and wages, while it continues to achieve Council’s priorities. This budget allows us to maintain a state of good repair for our streets, roads and facilities, appropriately increase service delivery for transit, public safety, and sidewalk snow clearing, advance initiatives for a more open government, and focus a much needed reinvestment on our downtown core.”

Regional Council remains committed to reducing the tax burden in the commercial sector by absorbing $4 million in lost revenue from the final phase out of the Business Occupancy Tax, and changing the calculation of the commercial tax rate by linking commercial tax revenue with Halifax’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) instead of the residential tax rate. This approach increases total commercial tax revenues by 1.8 per cent, with the increase largely attributable to new construction.

“With this budget, we continue to foster economic growth through our Bridging the Gap program, for which we will hire approximately 30 interns in evolving positions throughout our organization,” said Mayor Savage. “We’re also streamlining our approach to development approvals and permitting to help meet our pledge to reduce red tape for developers and business owners small and large.”

Over the next year, citizens will see a significant investment in transit technology along with new and expanded bus and ferry services, extension of HRM sidewalk snow clearing to all urban communities, street and sidewalk repairs, funding for specialized police investigations, increased access to youth programming, and public engagement opportunities on the Regional Plan, Solid Waste Resource Management Strategy, and the next strategic plan for Metro Transit.

For more information on the approved 2013-14 budget visit


Media contacts:

Shaune MacKinlay
Principal Advisor
Mayor’s Office

Tiffany Chase
HRM Communications



Above content last modified Thursday, November 02, 2023 at 11:40am.