Mayor Doug Mccallum “dismayed” by $514 million city debt
Surrey: Mayor Doug Mccallum says he is “deeply dismayed” by the state of the city’s finances and has instructed staff to launch what he calls a “pay as you go” system to cut down the debt. Mccallum, who served as Surrey’s mayor between 1999 and 2005, was re-elected in October and says he was “shaken to the core” when he learned about the red ink on city books.
He says the current debt totals $514 million. Mccallum is confident the planned pay-as-yougo system will not impact current programs and services across the city.
But he says council must now determine how to “responsibly proceed with capital projects.”
Mccallum wants to see Surrey “operate like a regular household’’ by saving up and paying bills as they are due. “When I was previously mayor for nine years, I took great pride in running the city’s finances by saving first and avoiding debt. Council and I have agreed to immediately bring the city’s fiscal house in order,” Mccallum says in a news release.
A budget report prepared by staff will be presented to Surrey’s finance committee on Dec. 11 and Mccallum says he and council won’t comment further until they have reviewed that document.
Mayor Doug Mccallum