City Council begins debate this week on the projected budget for next year and 2018. The projected tax increase you’ll pay in 2017 will be 3.1%, slightly down from what was projected a year ago.
City council had hoped money to refurbish several neighborhoods would be paid for with federal and provincial grants, however it didn’t work out that way. Instead the strings that were attached means Mayor Don Iveson and council will have to include a 1.5% tax hike inside the larger number.
“More than $30 million of efficiencies has allowed us to keep the tax rate down while still ploughing money into things that are important to people like neighborhood renewal,” Iveson told reporters last week. “Which by the way will create jobs. We’re going to get good value for it right now, so we’re able to maintain the services and infrastructure that people expect at a more moderate tax rate than originally forecast.”
Council has also been told that barring a massive snow storm over these final five weeks of 2016, the surplus will be $28 million. “We may be able to use one time money for some of those things from the surplus to keep the tax rate down,” Iveson said. “I think that will be our drive, is to see if we can go down from 3.1%, not up from 3.1%.”
The 3.1% increase means for the so-called typical home, with an assessed value of $408,000, you’ll be paying an additional $72. The projected hike for 2018 will be 4.9% which is up by a tenth of a percentage point from the original projection at 4.9%.
(630 CHED News)