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Town approves 2017 Municipal Budget
by Sandy Lindsay

January 25, 2017
www.saugeentimes.com

Town Council

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It will take over $41million to maintain the operating services (at almost $26 million) and capital projects (at almost $16 million) for the Town of Saugeen Shores in 2017.  Of that, the taxpayer portion will be $12,579,841.

The result will mean an annual tax levy increase of 4.04 per cent, and with the County and Education rates, it is expected that the blended rate will be 3.97 per cent. The result will be an increase of $117 on the average residential unit assessed at $282,000.

The overall tax levy will be $3,052 per property in 2017 up from $2,935. 

The projected tax levy increase is $600,000  following adjustments in various areas. Among the changes were adjustments in revenues from changes to the Fees & Charges By-Law and a reduction to the Bridge Reserve transfer.

There are a number of capital work projects for a total of $15.6 million in the 2017 Capital Budget, including $5.4 for the new police headquarters and expansion of the Dr. Earl Medical Centre at some $400,000

 It is anticipated that funding will come from a combination of tax dollars, donations, grants, Federal Gas Tax Funding, User Fees, Development Charges and Reserve Transfers.

In addition, residents will see an increase in water and sewer rates of 5 per cent and 6 per cent respectively.  The bi-monthly base capital contribution rate for water will go from $35.10 to $36.86 and sewer will see an increase from $38.70 to $43.02, which will result in the average bi-monthly residential water bill for 2017 estimated at $161.

The two BIA budgets as unchanged with Port Elgin at $33,000 and $29,350 for Southampton.

Final budget approval will come at the February 13th meeting however, the County and School Board figures are yet to be confirmed.

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The budget also includes several service level enhancements and donations requested:

  • Economic Development & Strategic Communication Operating Budget ($25,000 funded from the Tax Levy)
  •  Economic Development Strategic Plan ($30,000 funded from the Tax Stabilization Reserve)
  •  Office 2016 Software Upgrade ($23,500 funded from the Tax Stabilization Reserve)
  •  Design Guidelines Review ($20,000 funded from the Tax Stabilization Reserve)
  •  Conversion of the Engineering GIS contract position to full-time ($20,720 funded from the Tax Levy)
  •  Waste Management Master Plan ($25,000 funded from the Waste Management Reserve)
  •  Sanitary Collection System Condition Assessment ($50,000 funded from the Sanitary Reserve)
  •  Storm Water Master Plan ($80,000 funded from Development Charges)
  •  AutoCAD Civil 3d Software Licence ($4,000 funded from the Tax Levy)
  •  Community Services staff complement ($30,000 for wages & benefits for a seasonal position to be funded from the Tax Levy)
  •  Bike Friendly Initiatives ($9,000 funded from donations & the Tax Levy)
  •  Building Condition Assessments ($6,000 funded from the Facilities Improvement Reserve)
  •  Curly Leaf Pondweed Fairy Lake ($10,000 funded from the Tax Levy)
  •  Harbour & Tourist Camp Software ($24,850 to be borrowed from the Future Capital Projects Reserve user fees will be adjusted in 2018 to account for the loan repayment)
  •  Beach Grooming ($9,000 funded from the Tax Levy)
  •  Donation to the Southampton Tennis Club ($20,000 funded from the Tax Stabilization Reserve)
  •  Increase to the Operating Grant to the Saugeen Shores Chamber of Commerce ($14,000 funded from the Tax Levy)
  • Canada 150th Committee Funding ($65,000 funded from the Tax Stabilization Reserve)

To read the Treasurer's Report ... Click Report and Schedules .


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Wednesday, January 25, 2017