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City of Vernon launches public budget process

The City of Vernon is starting to work on the 2017 budget. - Photo submitted
The City of Vernon is starting to work on the 2017 budget.
— image credit: Photo submitted

Vernon residents are being asked to help create the city's financial plan.

An online survey will run from Sept. 19 to Oct. 14 that asks residents to say if they would increase, decrease or maintain spending for services in the 2017 budget.

"Our public engagement strategy is to reach as many residents as possible so we can achieve a deep and broad understanding of the public’s desires — including how their tax dollars are managed," said Mayor Akbal Mund.

This process not only provides an avenue for Vernon residents to share their thoughts, it offers a higher level of transparency for the process.”

However, not everyone is sold on the process.

"There's a certain demographic that doesn't use computers or goes online," said Coun. Juliette Cunningham.

However, Mund insists there will still be an opportunity for residents who don't use computers to speak to council during discussions later in December.

"They can attend our deliberations here," he said.

Coun. Bob Spiers isn't sure what will come from the online survey or how much influence it will have on the budget.

"The people I listen to are the ones who come out (to meetings) and present specific ideas," he said.

Results from the survey will be collected and shared with council and administration.

The budget input survey will be available Sept. 19 at www.vernon.ca/budget.

"This is designed to be a five to 10 minute exercise (to complete," said Tanya Laing Gahr, communications officer.

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