2017 City Budget

Consultation has concluded

Thank you, Oshawa for taking part in the 2017 City Budget process! Between October 11, 2016 and January 10, 2017, we received more than 1,700 public feedback submissions.

In-person and online feedback opportunities included:

  • pre-budget survey – online, automated phone and in-person (paper)
  • feedback form on the proposed budget – online and in-person (paper)
  • online Question & Answer and Live Q & A
  • open house
  • presenting to Council as a delegation

Oshawa City Council has approved the 2017 City Budget. The approved budget invests in key strategic priorities to strengthen the future of the City while also balancing affordability with the delivery of quality services.

Missed the Budget deliberations? Watch the meetings online via webstream:

Thank you, Oshawa for taking part in the 2017 City Budget process! Between October 11, 2016 and January 10, 2017, we received more than 1,700 public feedback submissions.

In-person and online feedback opportunities included:

  • pre-budget survey – online, automated phone and in-person (paper)
  • feedback form on the proposed budget – online and in-person (paper)
  • online Question & Answer and Live Q & A
  • open house
  • presenting to Council as a delegation

Oshawa City Council has approved the 2017 City Budget. The approved budget invests in key strategic priorities to strengthen the future of the City while also balancing affordability with the delivery of quality services.

Missed the Budget deliberations? Watch the meetings online via webstream:

CLOSED: This discussion has concluded.
  • The following question was submitted via the Budget Survey (http://www.connectoshawa.ca/budget/survey_tools/survey). With the reduction of three Regional Councillors from Oshawa serving Durham Council, will there be a corresponding reduction of the size of Oshawa council as an effort to reduce future costs?

    about 2 years ago

    Thank you for your question. 

    The size of Council is ultimately a matter to be decided by City Council; however it should be decided after consultation with the community. To this end, it is anticipated that the size of Council will be a matter discussed during the public consultation process associated with Oshawa’s Ward Boundary Review. 

    More information on the Ward Boundary Review is available on our website www.oshawa.ca/city-hall/oshawa-ward-boundary-review.asp and on Connect Oshawa: www.connectoshawa.ca/owbr

  • why is the city spending money on parkwood? wasnt it declared national historic site.. and as such receives federal monies? and didnt mclaughlin family leave money towards the house? if city is in financial problems.. why not let someone else run the recreational dept.. outsource the civic, legends.. why does city have to be involved in recreation?

    paua asked almost 2 years ago

    The City contributes funding to specific agencies that provide various recreation and cultural services to its residents. These grants are allocated amongst 5 external agencies (Oshawa Historical Society, Oshawa Public Libraries, Oshawa Senior Citizens Centres, Parkwood Foundation and The Robert McLaughlin Gallery).

    Yes, you are correct that Parkwood is designated a National Historic Site. For more information on other levels of funding and grants, please contact Parkwood directly (tel: 905-433-4311; email: info@parkwoodestate.com).

  • Do we really need a police helicopter?

    jscudds asked almost 2 years ago

    The City of Oshawa is part of a regional system of municipal government consisting of two tiers. The upper tier is the regional level and the lower tier is the local level. The Region of Durham operates as a broader scale of government, providing services including police, EMS, social services and transit. The responsibility and budget for police services is with the Region of Durham and in the Regional budget. For more information, visit:  http://www.durham.ca/finance.asp?nr=departments/finance/propertytaxbudget.htm


  • I see a budget allocation to the Airport of 6mil which is over 15% of the total. I did a quick review to find the details for what the 6 mil is for and cannot find the details. Please explain what the costs are for. Thanks you

    domarra asked almost 2 years ago

    Thank you for your question. More information on the airport rehabilitation project and costs associated with the project can be found here: http://app.oshawa.ca/agendas/city_council/2016/2016_12_12/cm-16-39-2017-time-sensitive-capital-projects.pdf

  • The following question was submitted via the Budget Survey: Why is there not more choices in question #2 [in the budget survey that asked respondents to choose the priority that they feel most important]? All of the items fall under the umbrella of the Economic Development Services in Oshawa. Why is there no focus on reducing poverty and increasing investment in affordable housing?

    almost 2 years ago

    Thank you for your input and questions.

    We will consider all suggestions (including your suggestion of adding additional priorities for respondents to select) when developing future opportunities for budget feedback.

    The responsibility of affordable housing and social services reside with the Region of Durham and are funded through the Regional portion of your property taxes (approximately 41% of your tax bill is collected on behalf of the Region).

    For more information on the Regional budget, visit: http://www.durham.ca/finance.asp?nr=departments/finance/propertytaxbudget.htm



  • The following question was submitted via the Budget Survey: Regarding question 1 [in the budget survey that asks respondents to choose an option to balance the budget], why is there no option to increase services? What exactly is a user fee?

    almost 2 years ago

    Municipalities are legislated by the Municipal Act - Ontario to prepare a balanced budget; money received must equal money spent. Increasing service levels would require the City to raise additional revenue to pay for the enhancement or decrease other City services as an offset to the increase in order to maintain a balanced budget.

    To answer your question on user fees, a user fee represents a sum of money paid by an individual who chooses to access a service or facility provided by the City. Municipal services are funded by various revenue sources including property taxes, fees for services (i.e. building permits, licences) and user fees. User fees include recreation programs, fitness memberships, facility rentals, parking fees and pet adoption fees.

  • The following question was submitted via the Budget Survey: Why is Oshawa the highest taxed municipality in the GTA, with no appreciable difference in services. My understanding of the budget forecast is that the City decides what it needs first, then sets taxes to meet that requirement, rather than budgeting within existing confines.

    almost 2 years ago

    The budget is our key planning document and provides an official statement about how much the City plans to spend during a set period of time and how it will pay for expenses.

    The operating budget is a financing plan for the City’s day-to-day operations such as snow removal, road maintenance and fire services. The capital budget is a financing plan for construction of new or rehabilitation of existing assets such as buildings, roads and parks.

    The operating budget is prepared using a base budget approach that considers cost pressures on programs and services currently being delivered. Some of the factors applied to the base budget are: anticipated salary savings; inflationary increases for commodities; contractual wage increases; and funding external agencies that provide various recreation and cultural services to residents (Oshawa Senior Citizens Centres, Oshawa Public Libraries, Parkwood Foundation, Oshawa Historical Society and The Robert McLaughlin Gallery).

    In addition, municipal services are funded by various revenue sources including property taxes, fees for services (i.e. building permits, licenses) and user fees (i.e. recreation programs), while capital projects are funded by property taxes, reserve and reserve funds, federal and provincial grants, debt and development charges.

  • The following question was submitted via the Budget Survey: We pay such high taxes the recreation act are at a higher cost then neighbouring towns. School are over packed, my street is not plowed in the winter. I'm not sure why I pay 6000 in taxes a year. Please let me know what services are out there for the money I am putting out.

    almost 2 years ago

    The City collects property taxes on behalf of the City, Region and School Boards. For every dollar you pay in taxes, approximately 41 cents goes to the Region and 18 cents to local school boards.

    The City keeps only 41 cents from every tax dollar collected, which is managed by a budget that aims to balance competing priorities and challenges while providing quality services.

    The City portion of your tax dollars (approx. 40% of your total tax bill) goes to: services (e.g. snow removal, road maintenance and fire services); provides for continued maintenance and support of existing services and infrastructure (including Recreation facilities and parks); invests in key strategic priorities and infrastructure for the City’s future; and contributes funding to agencies that provide various recreation and cultural services to our residents (including libraries and seniors centres).

    The City is also faced with a number of pressures that are strenuous on resources, including rising hydro rates, debt servicing, new program and service delivery costs, increasing labour costs, inflationary costs, environmental impact costs (e.g. winter storms) and costs and changes in legislation.

    The proposed 2017 City budget proposes a 1.5% increase to the operating budget over 2016 plus a 1.0% dedicated infrastructure levy. The total increase of 2.5% is equivalent to $55.52 on a property assessed at $350,000 (the average house assessment value in Oshawa) on the City portion of taxes.


  • The following question was submitted via the Budget Survey: I would like to know more about how debt plays a part in the annual budget and how far into the future such budgetary commitments reach. How limiting are these debt commitments in the sense that they prevent the city meeting other present day needs?

    almost 2 years ago

    Thank you for your question on how debt is used in the City’s annual budget. Debt is an instrument used by many businesses and governments to provide financing for various capital initiatives. The City has both external and internal debt which is managed within prescribed limits established by the Province and City Council.

    The repayment of debt is a component of the City’s annual operating budget. Debt maturity dates vary depending on date of issue and term of financing.  The City employs a mix of short and long term financing vehicles.


  • The following question was submitted via the Budget Survey: The City has a mandate to do more with less. When cuts are made, is there any kind of review process to find out what the after effects are? We are feeling some of those cuts.

    almost 2 years ago

    Through its continuous improvement framework, the City applies LEAN principles to process review projects which may identify opportunities to improve, potentially creating capacity to streamline various aspects of the operations.

    The City conducts extensive analysis of services provided and service levels including benchmarking, statistical analysis, value for money evaluations and community input received through various engagement forums. This analysis and community impacts are fundamental drivers in modification decisions related to City services.


  • What please was the original amount owing on the Tribute Commuity Centre/GM Centre at the time of building completion ? How much has been paid off to date on the original amount owing ? Does the 2.5 percent increase in taxes (noted in the media) helping to cover this debt ?

    nobugme1 asked almost 2 years ago

    The original amount owing on the Tribute Communities Centre at the time of building completion was $45 million. To date, the amount of principal debt paid off is $13.628 million. Yes, the 2.5% increase includes debt repayment costs for the Tribute Communities Centre.


  • My Ask of This Council Now: That road-related capital expenses be prioritized for pedestrian travel modes, with a specific focus on safety at intersections. Ongoing: That staff be directed to report back on implementing a Vision Zero road traffic safety policy in the City of Oshawa

    arruda_j asked almost 2 years ago

    The City recently endorsed an asset management plan, which will, over time, establish the parameters for a new capital prioritization model that will take into account risk factors as appropriate. In addition, the City has in place an Integrated Transportation Master Plan, Active Transportation Master Plan and an Active Transportation Advisory Committee.


  • What was original cost of the Tribute Community center when first built.

    1cedarman asked almost 2 years ago

    The original cost of the Tribute Communities Centre was $45 million.


  • There is a large capital cost for runway replacement . What steps is the city doing to recoup these added cost from the users of that facility . Other city facilities have users fees that cover cost this should be no different . Has there been any study to see if what percentage of the users are city tax payers and if so do non residence pay a higher rate (is city tax payers subsidzing) . Deferring capital cost has risk but have one of the highest tax rate in Gta has long term risks also.

    Mtolmie asked almost 2 years ago

    The capital budget and 9-year forecast focus on investing in and renewing the City’s core infrastructure and providing the infrastructure necessary to respond to our growing city. City staff prioritize capital projects using the Council-approved approved Interim Capital Project and Major Initiatives Prioritization Model. Based on the prioritized list, affordable projects are proposed. On December 12, 2016, Oshawa Council approved a number of time-sensitive capital projects for 2017. The projects were identified by City staff as having potential cost savings to the City if approved in December as this would allow for tendering in early January 2017 by City staff. One of the projects is the extension of the runway at the Oshawa Municipal Airport.

    The airport business plan, approved by Council in 2015, identified the need to rehabilitate runway 12/30 and that the runway lighting and associated works are nearing the end their lifecycle. The runway continues to degrade which increases the risk of an aviation hazard.

    The runway rehabilitation project will be funded through the use of land sale proceeds, contributions from the airport reserve and an interfund note. Debt servicing costs will be repaid over 10 years through the Oshawa Executive Airport’s operating budget commencing in 2018.

  • What is the amount owing on the principal amount for the Tribute Communty Centre, previously known as the GM Centre ?

    nobugme1 asked almost 2 years ago

    The principal amount owing for the Tribute Communities Centre is $31.371 million at December 31, 2016.


  • Before I can accept that there is a need to increase my property tax bill yet again, I would first like the City to explain the programs and efforts that have been put in place to drive waste from current administrative and operational plans. What innovative cost saving initiatives are being explored? Show the taxpayers that an effort has been made and just maybe the support that you are so desperately seeking for a tax increase may be given.

    DTB asked almost 2 years ago

    Thank you for your question.

    The City has established a continuous improvement framework that is finding efficiencies at the City of Oshawa. The City uses best practices, benchmarking and performance measurement to inform decisions, and continues to review processes, take a fresh look at and streamline operations, manage risks, and train our employees within a culture of continuous improvement. For example, Service Oshawa, the City’s consolidated customer service centre, provides a single point of contact for many City services. Other recent examples of successful cost reduction initiatives include: a maintenance management system improvement of 90% in time spent processing work orders, and an inventory management improved fill rate of greater than 50%.


  • Oshawa has the highest mill rate in Ontario. Twice that of Toronto. With the recent boom in housing prices, I am extremely concerned with what I will pay in taxes in the future. What is the City doing to protect property owners from being driven out of the City? And why is our mill rate so high?

    LAS asked about 2 years ago

    Thanks for posting a question.

    Property taxes are not calculated on housing prices but rather assessment values as determined by the Municipal Property Assessment Corporation (MPAC).

    Property taxes are a function of the tax rates that vary based on the budgetary requirements of the municipality.

    There are a number of items to consider when looking at your tax rate as a property owner in the City of Oshawa.

    Oshawa offers some of the most affordable housing in the GTA and delivers quality services (e.g. snow removal, fire services, waste collection) and has numerous amenities (e.g. 130+ parks, an extensive trail system, 7 community centres). In addition, we invest in key infrastructure needed for the future of the city, and contribute funding to agencies that provide various recreation and cultural services to our residents (including the libraries and seniors centres).

    We are faced with numerous financial pressures, as are many other municipalities. Soaring hydro rates, primarily as a result of global adjustment fees added to the market price of electricity, are creating a significant drain on City resources. Other pressures the City faces include: debt servicing, new program and service delivery costs, increasing labour costs, inflationary costs, environmental impact costs (e.g. winter storms), infrastructure renewal and replacement, and costs and changes in legislation.

    The City collects taxes on behalf of the Region of Durham and the school boards. As such, only 41% of your taxes go to the City of Oshawa to fund services, capital investments and agencies.

  • Does the budget have money set aside to initiate a study process to bring back the auditor general?

    kje1995 asked about 2 years ago

    Thank you for submitting a question.

    The City has contracted with KPMG, one of the “big-five” audit firms, to perform the City’s internal audit function.

    The internal audit function, which can be performed by hired staff or by a professional firm through a competitive bid process, performs detailed procedural and control audits, as well as value for money and operating review type audits. The audit is focused strictly on procedures, controls, efficiency and value.

    There are a number of advantages in performing audits using external services and a number of disadvantages of hiring one internal Auditor to perform the work.  These are outlined in staff report FIN-14-92. For more information, please view the Report

    Through 2015 and 2016, KPMG completed four audits with four additional audits underway.  A number of KPMG’s recommendations have been implemented or are in-progress.

    In addition to the audit work, KMPG provided workshops to City staff related to Cyber security risks and self-audit education.

  • The following question was submitted via the Budget Survey between Oct. 11 and Nov. 14, 2016. How is it that our property taxes are some of the highest in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA)? An example is that we have family members with a home in North York that pays somewhere around $3k-$4k a year in property taxes and there home is well north of $1m and yet our taxes are north of $5k with a home value north of $500k and thus our home’s values along with the property taxes are in no way a fair reflection of that when compared to other area homes in the GTA. Of course I am aware of the development and infrastructure that is currently happening in Oshawa....but how is it that our taxes still rise year after year and is nowhere near any inflationary factors.... and of course each year that keeps passing by, new taxes would start flowing in the cities coffer to start justifying this development and yet we still don’t see any reasonable reductions and our home is already nearing the 10 year anniversary??

    about 2 years ago

    Thank you for your question. There are a number of factors at hand. Oshawa offers some of the most affordable housing in the GTA and delivers quality services (e.g. snow removal, fire services, waste collection) and has numerous amenities (e.g. 130+ parks, an extensive trail system, 7 community centres). In addition, we invest in key infrastructure needed for the future of the city, and contribute funding to agencies that provide various recreation and cultural services to our residents (including the libraries and seniors centres).

    Oshawa continues to grow and while having more residents and businesses partially covers the cost of services, at the same time, this growth puts added pressure on service delivery, facilities and infrastructure.

    The City and other municipalities are faced with numerous financial pressures. Soaring hydro rates, primarily as a result of global adjustment fees added to the market price of electricity, are creating a significant drain on the City resources. Other pressures for the City include: debt servicing, new program and service delivery costs, increasing labour costs, inflationary costs, environmental impact costs (e.g. winter storms), infrastructure renewal and replacement, and costs and changes in legislation. Revenue sources for the City are limited.

    The City collects taxes on behalf of the Region of Durham and the school boards. As such, only 41% of your taxes go to the City of Oshawa to fund services, capital investments and agencies.

  • Does the budget include money for water fron development? The lower simcoe area is an eye sour. Are there plans to improve area?

    Lakeview asked about 2 years ago

    Thank you for your question on whether the City budget includes funding for development at the Oshawa waterfront.

    We are happy to provide you with an update. In the budget approved earlier this year, Council approved funding to convert the City owned lands around the harbor into a passive recreational area. City staff are working diligently to advance the City’s obligations under the Harbour Settlement Agreement with the Port Authority and Federal Government to provide a passive recreational area on City Lands adjacent to the Harbour. This includes remediating the lands at the Harbour to a standard that will allow public access to the lands. The City is also in the process of seeing if there is any interest from the private sector to develop and operate a marina at the harbour. Furthermore, the City has pre-zoned the lands on the north side of Harbour Road for multi-residential development.

  • The following question was submitted via the Budget Survey between Oct. 11 and Nov. 14, 2016: I'm very disappointed with the roadwork in North Oshawa being completed AFTER the 407 opened. It didn't sneak up on us, why wasn't it done prior?

    about 2 years ago

    The road work being undertaken in north Oshawa on Simcoe, Harmony and Ritson is being undertaken by the Region of Durham since these roads fall under their jurisdiction. You may want to contact them about your comments. 

    For more information on Regional road projects, visit www.durham.ca/works.

  • The following comment was submitted via the Budget Survey (at the bottom of an additional comment) between Oct. 11 and Nov. 14, 2016: I fail to understand why I wasted my time today...simply, council and staff are totally out of touch with reality. Maybe even confirm that this comment was actually read.

    about 2 years ago

    We thank you and the community for taking part in the initial survey for the 2017 City budget. Approximately 1,700 community members participated from October 11 to November 14. The community feedback gathered will be shared with Council when City staff present the proposed budget to Council in December. 

  • Just moved to Oshawa from Toronto. Why do i pay so much money for so little stuff? i took my family to Lakeview Park, supposedly the jewel of the city. The place was steeped in trash. That's not hyperbole. Take a stroll along the waterfront near those breakwater rocks. The nickname for this city, the "Dirty 'Shwa," is well-earned. Why does Ritson Road south of Winchester reduce to a single lane on a bi-directional road, despite being an outlet for the 407, and the presumed site of a lot of future development? Why are road repairs at Taunton and Harmony taking so long, with workers so infrequently on-site? Why is the GO Train station such a logistical nightmare for traffic? Why does it cost, at a minimum, $24/hr to rent a meeting room at the Legends Centre, plus a $16/hr staff fee, plus an insurance fee? What if a citizen wants to run a community group or club (knitting circle, book club, etc) and doesn't want to use his or her private home? Where is the incentive for community-building? Why does every funded event have to do with cars? The movie night at the Regent is car-themed. There is Kars on King. Bikes on Bloor (motorcycles, not bicycles). The influence of GM on the city is waning, but that's not being reflected in the culture. Rather, people are clinging to it desperately. Perhaps weaning the population off that company starts with theming cultural events around something other than motorized vehicles?

    Ryan asked about 2 years ago

    Thank you for your feedback. We will pass along your comments about Lakeview Park and the cost of renting meeting room facilities to the appropriate staff in Community Services.

    The City of Oshawa and Region of Durham are investing in road works to support the Highway 407 extension. Construction at Taunton and Harmony falls under the Region. Additionally, construction at Ritson Road South of Winchester, although not an outlet for Hwy 407, also is managed by the Region. For more information on Regional road projects and road construction updates, please visit, www.durham.ca/works.

    GO Transit services is an important issue for all of Durham Region, both public and private sectors, as well as for partners to the east. A partnership has been developed to advocate for the Province to fund the extension of the lakeshore east GO train service through Central Oshawa to Bowmanville –the plan is for two new stations in Oshawa and two in Clarington. For more information, visit www.oshawa.ca/goeastdurham.

    We will also pass along your feedback regarding Oshawa’s car-themed events. We would like to share that Oshawa has approx. 40 annual community events, including Fiesta Week, the award-winning Peony Festival, Canada Day, Concerts in the Park, Culture Squared, Culture Days, Christmas Tree Lighting and Oshawa Celebrates. We hope you join us for some of these amazing events – for more information on upcoming events, please visit www.oshawa.ca/events. Oshawa’s cultural events are supported by the Culture Counts: Oshawa’s Arts, Culture and Heritage Plan – please take a minute to learn more here http://www.oshawa.ca/things-to-do/arts-culture-and-heritage-plan.asp and to subscribe to receive our Culture Counts e-newsletter and latest Cultural news here: www.oshawa.ca/subscribe.

  • The following question was submitted via the Budget Survey between Oct. 11 and Nov. 14, 2016. Why are we sub contracting to miller waste for organic and garbage collection Why are we allowing new buildings to be constructed around durham college when the exsisting buildings are at 60-75% capacity Why are there not more city jobs being offered Why are we allowing rooming houses in the durham college area. there are cars parked on front lawns and on the roads over night all the time through out the year

    about 2 years ago

    Thank you for your completing our Budget survey and for your questions.

    In response to your question on waste subcontracting - The City’s continued growth within our waste collection has not been even across all days of the week and within weeks based on garbage days. Due to this, utilization of contractors to supplement staff on those specific days until the growth levels off across all days is the most fiscally responsible method to our taxpayers. Contractors are also utilized during exceptional circumstances or short seasonal requirements.

    In June 2016, Durham College and UOIT approved a master plan to guide the development of its shared campus over the next decades. They anticipate that the current enrollment of about 20,000 students will increase by an additional 18,000 students over this period. The timing of new buildings is completely up to the schools. The implementation of their master plan is being done based on their assessment of their growth and program needs. 

  • The following question was submitted via the Budget Survey between Oct. 11 and Nov. 14, 2016. What is your plan when GM finally pulls out of Oshawa and shuts down? We have been slammed by GM for the last 15 years in their downsizing.

    about 2 years ago

    Thank you for your feedback. GM continues to be an important business in the City but its relative impact on the City’s economy has become less over the years. The City’s economy has become more diverse with the Health Services and Educations sectors now larger than the Manufacturing sector.

    A diverse economy creates more stability and allows the City to better adapt to future economic opportunities and issues. Going forward, the City is implementing its Sector Analysis and Cluster Development Strategy that reflects the community's evolving economic landscape and sets a new direction for economic development initiatives. It focuses on 5 key sectors that are emerging and positioned with high potential for continued growth.  They include: Advanced Manufacturing; Energy Generation; Health and Biosciences; Multimodal Transportation and Logistics; and Information Technologies.

    For more information on the Sector Analysis and Cluster Development Strategy, visit: https://www.oshawa.ca/business-and-investment/reports-and-publications.asp.

  • The following question was submitted via the Budget Survey between Oct. 11 and Nov. 14, 2016. With the increase in taxes and change in the boundaries (BIA) what new services can our office expect?

    about 2 years ago

    Thank you for your question.

    The Downtown BIA members set its annual budget and the resulting levy is collected on its behalf by the City. The BIA uses the funds to market the downtown and other projects.

    The levy is unrelated to the City’s provision of services in the core.

    Currently, the City is undertaking a study of servicing in the core that may result in some changes in the future. The results of the study will be shared and discussed with the BIA and its members.

  • The following question was submitted via the Budget Survey between Oct. 11 and Nov. 14, 2016. I would like to inquire if the new Fire Chief intends to submit a budget request to hire and fully staff the new fire station 6 with a full complement of firefighters. I understand that a truck was simply moved from Station 3 to cover this station.

    about 2 years ago

    Thank you for your question regarding the staffing of fire station 6. The City invested significant time and resources conducting a comprehensive examination of all aspects of the Fire Service when developing the 2013 Fire Master Plan. A truck and crew were relocated to station 6 from an existing fire station based on first response and depth of response capability in our community as recommended in the Master Fire Plan. Fire Services continually monitors response capabilities throughout our community and is not recommending additional staffing complement at this time for fire station 6.


  • You guys don't get it....what does in the process mean......you should have been doing this 20 years ago.... .the City has an economic diversity strategy that is in the process of being implemented. The Sector Analysis and Cluster Development Strategy is Council-approved and sets a new direction for economic development initiatives. The Strategy identifies 5 key sectors that are positioned with high potential for growth. The sectors include: Health Services/Biosciences, Advanced Manufacturing, Energy, Multimodal Transportation and Logistics; and Information Technologies. The Strategy focuses on building the density of businesses, talent, and inter-connected support structures needed to support these more sustainable sources of growth. For more information, and to read the Strategy, visit our Business and Investment webpage

    ron asked about 2 years ago

    Thank you for commenting. 

    To provide some more information, the Cluster Strategy’s implementation forms part of the Economic Development Branch’s annual work plan. 

    Staff have been focusing on working with companies within the identified sectors to facilitate their individual growth objectives, connect them with government assistance programs where warranted, liaising with the local educational institutions to better align their programs with industry needs and fielding investment inquires. Intelligence gained from ongoing involvement with cluster companies and stakeholders will be used to refine the program as it goes forward. 

    Department business plans are posted on our website:  http://www.oshawa.ca/city-hall/strategic-planning.asp


  • This is more a comment than a question......I have zero confidence that the city government has the competence to properly run a city such as Oshawa that is growing. There is no vision nor strategic plan on how the city is going to create jobs. There is no industrial strategy - instead of always worrying about whether major employers such as GM are going to close - the city should be working on an industrial strategy to attract high paying knowledge based industries to the region. If you were to look at Mississauga - they did this many many years ago with the Pharmaceutical industry - Oshawa needs to do this. I also feel that the city does not have it's priorities in place nor does the city consult the taxpayers before making a major decision - recent examples - the name changing of the GM Centre to Tribute and the decision to spend money on the jumbo-tron for the GM Centre. We're paying high taxes for what - at least the city can boast - I believe I had read Oshawa residents pay the highest property taxes in the GTA. What are we getting for our hard earned dollars - nothing.

    ron asked about 2 years ago

    Thank you for your input and comment. 

    The City has an economic diversity strategy that is in the process of being implemented. The Sector Analysis and Cluster Development Strategy is Council-approved and sets a new direction for economic development initiatives. The Strategy identifies 5 key sectors that are positioned with high potential for growth. The sectors include: Health Services/Biosciences, Advanced Manufacturing, Energy, Multimodal Transportation and Logistics; and Information Technologies. 

    The Strategy focuses on building the density of businesses, talent, and inter-connected support structures needed to support these more sustainable sources of growth. For more information, and to read the Strategy, visit our Business and Investment webpage

  • Oshawa waterfront could become a major tourist attraction with substantial income for city. We already have a beautiful park by the lake but city needs tourist attractions such as a water park, marina, restaurants, etc.... that could generate income rather than just being a burden on tax payers. If the current permitted land uses were economically feasible these lands would have been purchased and developed by now specially given the current real-estate boom. Why not look at other potential uses for the vacant lands in south end of the city?

    rsadeghi asked about 2 years ago

    Thank you for your input Oshawa’s waterfront and we are happy to provide you with an update. City staff are working diligently to advance the City’s obligations under the Harbour Settlement Agreement. This includes remediating the lands at the Harbour to a standard that will allow public access to the lands. In 2016, the City issued a Request For Expressions of Interest (RFEOI) to develop a marina at the harbour and continue to advance this objective. City staff continue to review the submissions to the RFEOI and will report back to Council once the review is complete. In addition, the City has pre-zoned the lands on the north side of Harbour Road for residential development. 

  • Looking for the outcome of the residential solar power study. Also looking for where the costs came out of the city budget.

    Pug asked about 2 years ago

    Thank you for taking the time to provide your feedback. The solar-plus-storage systems project was a partnership between the Oshawa PUC and Tabuchi Electric (read the media release announcement); as such, the project was not funding through the City’s operating or capital budgets. For an update on the OPUC/Tabuchi project, please contact OPUC at 905-723-4623. 

  • Is there a Twitter, LinkedIn or Facebook group (some online platform) for citizens to freely talk among themselves on City of Oshawa (and Regional) budget matters? I see that there is a Live Q&A on Jan 5th, but this is still the city organizing the conversation. I am just looking to talk to other citizens (online) that would like to talk about budget concerns.

    @JamesIbbott asked about 2 years ago

    Thank you for your question. We are not aware of other online forums on the City budget. We do hope you join us on January 5 for the live Q&A (and yes, it is organized by the City of Oshawa).

  • The following question was submitted via the Budget Survey: "On the survey," question # 2 should also include: The management of record growth and the increased pressures on transit.

    about 2 years ago

    Thank you for completing our budget survey and for your input.

    The management of growth can be tied to “economic development and investment” in the survey.

    The responsibility of transit is with the Region of Durham and in the Regional budget. For more information, visit the Durham Region's webpage on property tax budgets

  • Why isn't the City of Oshawa being a leader in green energy and home development? There is a huge opportunity for this city to become a leader in Ontario and challenge developers to build better, environmentally and socially friendly subdivisions. Environmental clean up, renewable energy and environmental/community stewardship should have been a choice to direct my tax dollars towards on the telephone survey.

    TaraM asked about 2 years ago

    Thank you for taking time to provide your input.

    The Oshawa Strategic Plan identifies Environmental Responsibility as one of five goals that guide decisions made by the City in accordance with the guiding principles of sustainability and financial stewardship. To read more, visit http://www.oshawa.ca/city-hall/strategic-planning.asp.

    We are gathering all suggestions and will consider suggestions when developing future opportunities for budget feedback.


  • We (Oshawa) have the highest taxes almost anywhere in Canada. It always is a durham region increase and Oshawa increase. I feel the city should look within its programs /services to cutback. What is the city going to do when GM eventually pulls out of Oshawa which will affect many local businesses as well. Hopefully they have a plan. Hopefully no more Cullen Garden mini house fiascos in the future

    unhappy taxpayer112 asked about 2 years ago

    Thank you for your feedback and question. 

    The City’s Sector Analysis and Cluster Development Strategy reflects the community's evolving economic landscape and sets a new direction for economic development initiatives focusing on 5 key sectors that are emerging and positioned with high potential for continued growth. In addition to Advanced Manufacturing, the other sectors are Energy Generation; Health and Biosciences; Multimodal Transportation and Logistics; and Information Technologies. 

    Learn more and read the Development Strategy here: https://www.oshawa.ca/business-and-investment/reports-and-publications.asp