January 20, 2015 - 4:44 PM
KAMLOOPS - With many budget requests from staff and the public yet to be decided on, the average homeowner can already expect to pay an additional $35 in property taxes this year.
That $35 is based on the 1.91 per cent mill rate increase set out in the core services budget, but Assistant Finance Director Doug Stewart says if everything on the supplemental budget is approved the rate could go up another 0.7 per cent. There is also potential additions to the budget from public requests, he noted.
Among the most expensive items being requested in this year’s budget is nearly $2.9 million in repairs to the vapour barrier at the Canada Games Pool. While repairing the vapour barrier incorrectly installed on another part of the Tournament Capital Centre, it was discovered there were issues with the pool side of the building as well. For efficiency sake, staff are recommending these repairs take place at the same time as roof repairs.
Other potential impacts on the budget are a new solid waste bin truck for commercial and multifamily pickup at $300,000, and $188,650 to outfit city fleet with GPS as part of a mobile resource management system, both funded from reserve funds. Upgrades to the Sheep Breeder heritage building on Lorne Street and $100,000 to complete upgrades at Rose Hill Park are also on the table.
In total nearly $3.5 million in additional projects and equipment are being requested to come out of tax or utility funding for 2015. Another $3 million in projects are being requested with the budget impact set to come in 2016.
Another public consultation is scheduled for Feb. 24 from 7 to 10 p.m. at Parkside Lounge and council will then look at which items to cut out of the supplementary budget on March 31. On April 14 council will be asked to finalize the tax rate.
Garbage rates also went up an average of an additional $15 per household on Jan. 1.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2015