For the first time since amalgamation the proposed tax rate in Quinte West, by percentage, will be even in all four wards.
Treasurer David Clazie presented the 2016 operating budget outline on Monday night, which totals about $64.4 million and shows a tax increase of 2.44% overall, based on a home valued at $201,000.
But Clazie tells Quinte News the dollar amount per month changes depending on where you live.
In Sidney and Murray Ward residents will pay $4.81 more per month, while in Frankford the increase is $4.86 and in Trenton it’s $5.35.
Overall the city is expected to spend $64.4 million if the operating budget is approved.
Mayor Jim Harrison thinks it’s a fair plan and is expecting that city council will approve it later this month.
There were no significant increases in any categories, but more will be spent on materials, contract services and some salaries.
However there’s a savings of about $800,000 in OPP costs, now that the police force’s new costing model is in its second year.
Some other highlights include:
Salaries totaling just over $17.1 million
– includes all changes for contracts settled in 2015 (firefighters, CUPE, etc.)
– $85,000 for a grant research analyst and $40k for management transitions in arenas and it (one time costs offset by reserves.
– $20,000 added to keep a special event coordinator on until the end of the year
– $80,000 to keep arenas staffed year-round (to work on maintenance and maybe summer ice next year)
Materials and supplies totalling $5.8 million (up $465,000 from 2015)
– $127,000 in additional hydro costs ( due to elimination of clean Ontario benefit and increase in delivery charge)
– $70,000 for tree maintenance, $100,000 for guard rail replacement, $200,000 for ditching (same as 2015)
– $100K for crack routing and sealing on roads
Contract services of about $7.2 million (up about $500,000 from 2015)
– $80,000 for public works and fire equipment repairs and maintenance
– $50,000 for software maintenance and upgrades
– $110,000 for external equipment
– $30,000 for legal fees (by-law enforcement)
– $100K for Film Festival (a report on the film festival contribution is yet to be presented and this figure may change)
Payments to external agencies $21.6 million (down $726,000 from 2015)
– OPP cost is down $820,000 due to new costing formula now in second year of the phase in
– A cut of funding to the Bay of Quinte Living Council saves $37,000
– The Stirling Arena will cost less this year because of major capital upgrades in 2014 and 2015
– Hastings County social services and housing contributions are down about $70,000
– Costs for EMS are up $100,000
– Costs for Long Term Care are up $69,000
– Library costs are up $60,000
The city will transfer $8.17 million into reserves (up $865,000 from 2015)