City council eyes tax increase

Rising wages and inflation tagged as reason for tax increase

CITY HALL officials have told council it needs to raise property taxes by 2.5 per cent to cover wage increases and inflation.

And the increase won’t add any new services, council was told last night at the first of what will be a series of meetings to craft the city’s 2012 budget.

City finance director Ron Bowles did say there will be new tax revenue from new developments but that it won’t be enough to keep property taxes down.

The draft budget was crafted with several principles in mind: maintaining the same services, prior years’ fiscal plans, the city’s strategic plan, already-started projects carrying on and the cost of inflation, said Bowles.

Money-saving ideas were raised by some at the meeting.

Mayor Dave Pernarowski asked if $25,000 could be saved by not putting fluoride in city water, citing public criticism of the practice as rationale.

“It’s certainly more of a health issue than cost issue,” said city public works director Herb Dusdal, adding it is a possibility.

Councillor Bruce Bidgood asked if it was possible to take some of the money from the budget’s $1.3 million surplus without affecting the city’s ability to provide emergency services.

“This budget, I believe, is pushing on our surplus,” said Bowles.

The city maintains a surplus money in case of an emergency or if some item ends up costing more than expected, Bowles explained.

For instance, the city has dipped into its surplus in order to keep up with this year’s record snowfall.

Bidgood asked Dusdal if new snow removal equipment had been considered when drafting the snow removal budget.

“If winters continue what they’re doing, yes,” Dusdal replied, adding he’s happy with snow removal practices now and that decision would be made next year.



Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Horgan makes campaign stop in Terrace and Kitimat

BC NDP leader met with local First Nations leaders, reiterated campaign promises

Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Sept. 27 to Oct. 3

World Farm Animals Day, Drink Beer Day and Virus Appreciation Day are all coming up this week

‘Monkey Beach’ supernatural film adaptation premiers at VIFF

Based on Kitamaat author Eden Robinson’s debut, mystical novel

COVID-19 cases grow to 13 at B.C. First Nation near Fort St. James

“This is very serious,” says Nak’azdli Whut’en Chief

Ecosocialists nominate candidate for Stikine

Edward Quinlan is the new party’s regional director for Skeena and Bulkley Valley regions

QUIZ: Do you know what’s on TV?

Fall is normally the time when new television shows are released

PHOTOS: 2nd calf in a month confirmed among Southern Resident killer whale pod

Center for Whale Research said they will eagerly await to observe the calf to evaluate its health

97 distressed horses, cats and dogs seized from farm in Princeton

RCMP assisted as BC SPCA executed search warrant

$250K reward offered as investigation continues into Sea to Sky Gondola vandalism

Police also asking for specific footage of Sea to Sky highway around time of incident

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Trudeau ‘disappointed’ by RCMP treatment of Sikh officers over mask issue

World Sikh Organization of Canada said taking Sikh officers off the front lines constitutes discrimination

Liberals reach deal with NDP on COVID-19 aid bill, likely averting election

NDP and the Liberals have reached an agreement on COVID-19 sick-leave

Money laundering inquiry delayed over of B.C. election: commissioner

Austin Cullen says the hearings will start again on Oct. 26

Most Read