Budget tabled with 9.31% increase
Clearview council got a first look at the municipal budget on Jan 12.
The proposed $18,576,145 budget is an increase of $1,717,336, once revenue from new growth is factored in, and represents a 9.31 per cent increase. After staff has factored in taxes collected for policing, the county and education, they estimate property owners will face a 5.91 per cent overall increase. That increase would translate to an additional $67.32 per year for every $100,000 of assessment.
CAO John Ferguson said the staff proposed budget is a starting point, and the increase “usually improves,” meaning that the increase can be lowered by council members.
“When it comes right down to it, we do what we feel we can afford to meet the services of the community and that’s really the goal of what we want to do,” said Ferguson, adding that each department puts forward a frugal budget. “It’s a starting point and I don’t want everyone to overreact.”
Staff is facing historically high costs with a 6.9 per cent Consumer Price Index and a 15.6 per cent non residential building price index, and is struggling with supply of vehicles and other equipment.
The public works department has the highest budget at $8,511,775.
Director of Public Works Mike Rawn began by highlight water and sewer infrastructure projects that will allow for more growth in Stayner ($73,000,000) and Creemore ($38,000,000) but are mostly funded in whole or part by developers, rather than taxpayers.
The roads budget accounts for most of the costs that do fall on taxpayers. Deputy director Dan Perreault told council he is facing high costs when it comes to fuel, gravel and winter sand. Included in the budget is $664,100 for gravel resurfacing and $225,000 for winter sand.
Several road reconstruction projects are being deferred to future budget years, including Riverside Drive from County Road 9 to 15/16 Sideroad ($3,443,000) and Centreline Road from County Road 9 to Con 7 ($3,465,000) but Perreault is proposing to finish the reconstruction of Concession 10 Nottawasaga, with Phase 2 planned for spring.
The Collingwood Street Bridge (pictured) replacement is on track for 2024, with engineering and design and permits to be completed in 2023.
Last week’s staff presentations included the library. CAO Jennifer LaChapelle highlighted some of the library’s budget items including signs for the Stayner branch ($11,000 estimate); the expansion of literacy based youth programs into two halls outside of communities served by branches ($600); maintenance costs for Creemore and New Lowell ($8,000); and future plans for an addition to the Creemore Branch in 2025 ($400,000, funded by development charges).
The second budget workshop on Jan. 19 includes presentations of staff prepared budgets for planning, building, emergency services, and parks and recreation.
The budget presentations and staff proposed budgets can be viewed at www.clearview.ca.
Economic Development $168,000
Information Services $478,130
Public works $8,511,775