We just didn’t see it coming.

Waterloo Region has a deficit already this year:

The Region of Waterloo had a $971,000 budget shortfall as of April 30, mostly due to low waste management revenues.

The actual waste management deficit is about $1.3 million but it’s offset by savings in other areas.

This might be reasonable if it were the result of unforeseen circumstances. But it isn’t:

Staff project lost revenues could reach as much as $3 million by year’s end, the same loss recorded in 2012. [emphasis mine]

So staff knew there was a problem, did nothing about it, and is now reporting a deficit. Again.

How does that definition of insanity go? Doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result?

The reason for the decrease in waste management revenues? Companies in search of a better deal:

Those private haulers charge a lot less per tonne to dispose of the trash at private facilities than the regional landfill charges.

The region seems to be overcharging for the market, and losing business as a result. Wouldn’t it be prudent to consider lowering costs to come closer to the private haulers?

Regardless of that, predicting an annual deficit because of a failure to take into account an existing situation is just a budgeting failure. And these are the same people managing the $818 million LRT project.

Be very afraid. If they can’t budget based on existing knowledge, how well will they be able to deal with the unknown?

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