Quinte West Council has approved its capital budget for 2018 with a price tag of just over $25.5 million.
Director of Corporate and Financial Services David Clazie says there are three major projects to be undertaken in 2018.
The police station, which is still going through the provincial approval process, would include space for a 401 traffic unit, a covered area for police vehicles and areas for use by community groups, which are currently in the Cox building.
The road and bridge work money will be used for resurfacing a section of Sidney Street, the reconstruction of North Murray Street through the industrial park and Quinte West’s share of a proposed roundabout on Wallbridge-Loyalist Road at Hamilton Road, among others.
Other major projects include $450,000 for work on the parking lot and interior of the Batawa Community Centre, with more discussion to be had with the groups who use that centre the most, to nail down specifics of those renovations.
The spending plan will be paid for through $13.3 million worth of debt, a combined $5.3 million in funds from the federal gas tax and Ontario Community Infrastructure Fund, along with a number of other reserve funds.
Clazie says the city currently has a total debt of $129.5 million, or about 60% of provincially recommended debt limits, but is making good headway in paying it off.
And Clazie adds the capital budget has been structured so that it won’t require any increase to taxes.
Quinte West City Council also approved a new 10-year structure for water and sewer rates.
In recent years, those rates have been increasing to make sure the city has enough money to handle needed upgrades and repairs to its systems, but staff is now recommending those rates increase a little bit less, year-over-year.
Clazie tells Quinte News, base rates won’t go up as fast as usage rates will, so residents will be able to have some more control over water/sewer bills.
The new rates will keep Quinte West one of the lowest among neighbouring municipalities, with an average monthly bill of about $105 next year, at a yearly consumption of 250 cubic metres.