Tax increase lowered

Vernonites won’t pay as much in taxes as expected.

The city’s proposed 2014 budget called for a 3.7 per cent increase in taxes, but during a meeting Friday, it was lowered to a 3.1 per cent hike.

“There’s little fat in the budget,” said Coun. Bob Spiers.

The tax hike was pared back because the city has confirmed the projected costs for parks and recreation services.

“We have also verified the anticipated decrease in the regional district requisition,” said Will Pearce, chief administrative officer, of the funds the city used to pay to the regional district for parks and recreation prior to restructuring.

Of the 3.1 per cent tax increase, 1.2 per cent will go towards city operations while 1.9 per cent is for infrastructure works.

A 3.1 per cent tax increase translates into about $30 for the average home.

Council met Wednesday, Thursday and Friday to hammer out further details of the 2014 financial plan.

As part of the process, public input was received but only one person spoke.

“Steady as she goes, advance, advance,” resident David Miller told council, adding that he is pleased with the direction of the budget.

The city must go through the bylaw requirements to adopt the 2014 budget.


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