Michael Brydon's blog

Getting ahead of the Covid curve

A nerdy joke was circulating widely on social media a few months ago:

The underlying insight is that a crisis provides a powerful opportunity for change—more powerful even than formal organizational power (CEO) or legitimizing knowledge and experience (McKinsey).

Report card for Alberta municipalities

The platform for the United Conservative Party in Alberta's recent provincial election included the following::

Improve local government financial reporting by preparing an annual Alberta Municipalities Measurement Index so Albertans can evaluate the performance of their local government in comparison with others on such key fiscal indicators as the property tax burden, revenues, spending, and debt.

Per capita property taxes in British Columbia

As noted in a previous post, each municipality in British Columbia reports an item called "Total Own Purpose Taxation and Grants in Lieu", which is a measure of total property taxation.  As we might expect, the total taxation in a community varies with its size.  We can see this if we plot taxation (2017) against population (2016 Statistics Canada) on a log-log scale:

Benchmarking residential water use

I have been experimenting in my electoral area with benchmarks for utility use (in this case: water).  We have water meters; however, our utilities software is not particularly good at generating information for water customers.  So we created dashboards that draw data from our billing software and present the information in a more accessible way.

In our experience, ratepayers have three main questions about water: