January 26, 2012
Growth, Infrastructure, Debt and Development Charges
• York Region is a thriving municipality, boasting a population of more than 1,060,000 people and 501,000 jobs
• York Region is expected to grow to more than 1.5 million people by 2031 consistent with Ontario’s Places to Grow legislation, which sets out a comprehensive growth strategy for the Greater Golden Horseshoe
• People want to live and move here to enjoy safe and liveable communities, high quality of life and close proximity to major shopping and employment
• The GTA is a destination of choice for many immigrants and new Canadians
• The Regional Municipality of York has developed a series of master plans to accommodate this growth while preserving our natural and green spaces
What is needed before growth can happen?
• York Region cannot grow without putting in place critical infrastructure such as water and sewage servicing and treatment, arterial roads and public transportation networks
• As York Region grows, this necessitates expanding our capacity and treatment of both drinking water and sewage
• Water and sewers are the most expensive of all infrastructure and need to be constructed well in advance of any building activity
• Infrastructure is typically planned over 10-year periods
How much debt will we incur?
• York Region’s 10-year capital budget identifies the need for approximately $4.3 billion of debt to support our capital program
• The majority of debt (principal plus interest) is paid by developers through Development Charges (DCs) once a property is developed
• DCs are one-time fees charged to developers to pay for infrastructure
• The Regional Municipality of York pays upfront the cost of most infrastructure
• This means York Region incurs debt to pay for these costs and then recovers the cost from development charges
How does this affect York Region’s credit rating?
Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s investor services have consistently awarded York Region AAA credit
ratings, partly in recognition of York Region’s policy of allocating funds annually to reserves. The Region has maintained consistent AAA ratings with both credit agencies since 2000. The Region’s high credit rating allows it to finance its debt at more favourable interest rates and translates into savings for Regional taxpayers.
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Media Contact: Ken Turriff, Corporate Communications, York Region
1-877-464-9675, ext. 1226 • Cell: 905-251-6415 • firstname.lastname@example.org