2024 Budget Invests in Housing, Safety and More to Support Residents Today and Tomorrow

A stylized graphic depicting houses on one side of the street, and a police station on the other. Below is white text on an orange background proclaiming "News Release 2024 Budget Invests in Housing, Safety and More to Support Residents Today and Tomorrow"

Maple Ridge, B.C., April 11, 2024 - Maple Ridge is moving forward with a 2024 budget that both addresses long-term needs and sets up the fast-growing community for success in the future.

At Tuesday’s meeting, Council gave three of four readings to the 2024 budget that includes a $150 (6.5 per cent) property tax increase this year for the average Maple Ridge home valued at $985,700 – higher than past years due to significant inflation and cost pressures, but lower than many other communities in the region. Formal adoption of the budget and 2024 tax rates will be considered by Council on April 23.

“Our 2024 budget delivers what residents have been asking for and invests in what our community needs to move forward: more police and firefighters to enhance public safety, improved transportation for people and goods, growth in local jobs and services, and housing that people can afford,” Mayor Dan Ruimy said. “Council recognizes that affordability is a key concern for our residents, and we worked hard to strike the right balance. We’re taking strategic, bold steps that are necessary to meet the needs of a community of almost 100,000 today and 140,000 in the near future.”

2024 Budget Highlights

In addition to funding core civic services, some of the key investments in Maple Ridge’s City’s $160 million operating budget for 2024 include:

  1. Enhancing public safety and meeting growing demand: 16 firefighters, 12 RCMP officers, an additional Victim Services Case Worker, and increased downtown overnight security to support downtown businesses.
  2. Addressing the requirements of new provincial housing legislation: Additional staff to increase capacity and efficiencies to support housing creation, develop pre-approved site plans, update Official Community Plan, Zoning Bylaw and Density Bonusing Program.
  3. Supporting local employment, tourism and business growth: Initiatives to retain and grow local businesses, attract new businesses, promote employment, attract events focused on tourists and residents, conduct a local labour market analysis, and undertake an Albion Industrial lands analysis to help attract new industrial businesses.
  4. Protecting City assets and services from online threats: Additional cybersecurity measures 
  5. Addressing climate change: A countertop food waste pilot, a management strategy to protect the McKenney Creek System, an inventory of local biodiversity and updating green infrastructure standards.
  6. Enhancing community engagement and livability: A toolkit to increase public engagement, a participatory budget initiative, and multiple live performance activations on the City’s mobile stage for Maple Ridge’s 150 birthday celebrations.
  7. Enhancing City services and governance: Strategies and technology to enhance customer experience and intergovernmental relations, an archeological management plan to meet provincial regulations, and a new continuous improvement program to enhance operational efficiency and citizen services.

The 2024-2028 capital plan includes $112 million in projects for 2024, funded through grants, development charges and reserve accounts. They include:

  1. Widening Abernethy Way to four lanes with a multi-use path between 224 and 230 Streets
  2. Continuing the process to plan, design and deliver a new recreation facility
  3. Rehabilitating 128 Avenue between 232 and 235A Streets
  4. Planning a second access to Silver Valley, a 240 Street bridge and multi-use path
  5. Increasing capacity of Lower Hammond Drainage Pump Station to improve flood protection
  6. Adding multi-use paths on Thorne Avenue
  7. Upgrading Port Haney Waterfront Park and Maple Ridge Park
  8. Paving 12 kms of two-lane roads
  9. Improving technology to enhance efficiency, cybersecurity and service-delivery

Budget Public Feedback

The City conducted two rounds of public engagement for the 2024 budget. From Jan. 16 to 28, more than 2,500 people visited the Engage Maple Ridge page where the survey was hosted and 462 people completed a detailed online survey. 

This initial round of engagement pinpointed community safety, infrastructure and economic development as residents’ top three priorities, and showed support for the City’s plans to support housing acceleration, increased community activation and engagement, governance and corporate excellence, and climate and the environment.

During the second round of engagement Feb. 16 to March 22, the City asked residents for feedback on the 2024 budget reflecting those priorities. Significantly fewer people took part, for a total of 174 survey responses. About 43 per cent of those had concerns about the budget, citing the proposed tax increase and the desire for additional increases in infrastructure (particularly transportation), public safety, and the business/commercial tax base. Other themes that emerged included support for fire and police services and increased arts and culture funding.

Factors Affecting the Budget

Maple Ridge’s 2024 budget was guided by the 2023-2026 Council Strategic Plan, adopted in 2023 following public engagement. In order to reduce the impact on taxpayers, the City used strategies such as spreading out the cost of additional firefighting and policing resources over multiple years, actively seeking grant funding to offset costs, and deferring some planned improvements.

When developing the budget, the City faced a variety of factors beyond its control, including:

  1. Labour agreements such as the RCMP settlement, CUPE (City staff) and IAFF (firefighters)
  2. Contracted services such as E-Comm 911, Fraser Valley Regional Library and the SPCA
  3. New unfunded responsibilities from provincial legislation for housing and accessibility
  4. Inflation and continuing economic uncertainty

For more information about the budget and development process, visit mapleridge.ca/budget2024.

Comments on the budget or other financial matters may also be provided year-round to budget@mapleridge.ca or 604-467-7484 (voicemail).

For additional information, contact

Pardeep Purewal

Senior Manager Corporate Communications & Public Engagement 
T 604 466 4319  E ppurewal@mapleridge.ca