The Town of Castlegar has released its audited Financial Statements and Statements of Financial Reporting (SOFI) for 2021.
The city ended the year with $20.5 million in financial assets and $19 million in liabilities, leaving net financial assets at approximately $1.5 million.
The city’s debt increased by nearly $6 million during the year. The jump was due to a temporary loan for Phase 2 of Columbia Avenue and equipment financing for a new excavator. However, in 2021, six other equipment finance loans have been fully repaid.
The city’s reserve funds total $14.7 million, up $1.1 million from 2020. This includes development reserve money, equipment replacement, funds for water, sewers, storms and airports.
The city also has $85 million in non-financial assets, including its fixed assets, an increase of $5.3 million from 2020.
The city says the increase is primarily due to the commissioning of Columbia Avenue Phase 2 infrastructure, the purchase of new equipment, and the acquisition of four parcels of land.
Salaries are one of the city’s biggest expenses. With benefits factored in, the city spent $6.3 million on employee-related expenses.
Municipalities are required to list all employees earning more than $75,000 per year as part of their SOFI report. In 2020, Castlegar had 29 employees in this category.
Executives and fire chiefs make up the top ten salaries, all of which exceed $105,000:
Chris Barlow, General Manager — $165,054
Ola Oladele, CFO — $141,783
Sam Lattanzio, fire chief — $137,771
Tracey Butler, Director of Corporate Services — $136,043
Duane Monson, Deputy Fire Chief — $133,690
Chris Hallam, Director of Municipal Services — $129,096
David Bristow, IT manager — $121,516
Michael Gagnier, Director of Operations — $117,335
Nick Ahlfeld, Deputy Fire Chief – $116,577
Meeri Durand, Planning Manager — $105,456
Bree Seabrook, Communications Manager – $105,456
The remaining positions earning between $75,000 and $100,000 include journeyman carpenter, foreman, engineering technician, building inspector, mechanic, water/sewer maintenance, planning technician, water and sewer maintenance worker, wastewater treatment plant operator, parks maintenance worker, senior systems analyst, planning manager, director of corporate services and director of engineering.
The report also includes information on the payroll of elected officials.
Mayor Kirk Duff won $20,133 from the city. He also receives an additional amount from the Regional District of Central Kootenay as a trustee representing the town of Castlegar (not included in the town’s report as this revenue comes from the RDCK).
Each councilman who served for the full year earned around $16,000, except for Dan Rye, who served part of the year as deputy mayor, bringing his total to $22,400. .
Prior to the 2021 by-election, Bruno Tassone earned $3,867 for his term as mayor and Florio Vassilakakis earned $3,333 for his term as councillor.
Bryan Bogle earned $8667 for his council term after winning a seat in the by-election.
The information in this article was contained in City Council’s May 2 committee of the full agenda, final versions will be adopted at the May 16 regular council meeting.