CBRM equalization: reality check

Each year, the Province of Nova Scotia provides equalization grants to municipalities with less-than-average fiscal capacity. The unconditional transfer is based on a formula that compares a municipality’s needs and ability to pay.

In the current fiscal year, the Cape Breton Regional Municipality received $16.7 million, which amounted to 52 percent of all the equalization money given out in the entire province. The next largest recipients were Amherst at $1.2 million, and New Glasgow at $1.0 million. Put another way, CBRM got 14 times as much money as the next largest recipient.

The numbers for 2009-2010 are expected to be similar.