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Armstrong mulls over significant tax, levy hike proposals

Municipal tax increase of seven per cent, and infrastructure levy hike of 2.3 per cent on draft table

Like its township neighbour, the City of Armstrong’s council gets a look at its proposed 2023-27 five-year financial plan at a special council meeting today, Monday, Feb. 6.

While Spallumcheen considers a 2.5 per cent tax hike, the city could be looking at more than double that of their neighbour.

The first draft of Armstrong’s plan calls for a seven per cent hike to municipal taxes, along with upping the infrastructure levy from 2.5 per cent to 4.8 per cent.

“The assets of the city need maintenance and in some cases replacement,” said chief financial officer Mohammed Choudhary. “It in the interest of the community for council to consider allocating funds to asset management.

“Our infrastructure is in dire need of upgrading.”

If council were to approve the 4.8 per cent levy increase, it would add up to $265,374 for the city, a $56,010 increase that would assist in funding critical upgrades and maintenance for road and drainage infrastructure.

The proposed levy increase would result in an overall increase to property taxes of $114.72 for an average household assessed at $521, 795, and $518.63 for a typical business assessed at $520,525.

The proposed seven per cent increase to municipal taxes in the budget would result in an overall increase for property taxes of $171,955. The non-market change, for the municipal taxes only, also results in a $21,293 increase to revenues.

A one percent increase to taxes amounts to $24,565 in revenue for the city.

The proposed increase would result in an overall jump to property taxes of $93.10 for an average household and $439.92 for a typical business assessed at $521,795 and $520,525 respectively.

The 2023 draft operating budget for the city is $15.4 million, and its capital budget for 2023 is $11.7 million. Those budgets includes city infrastructure, equipment, water, sewer and roads, as well as the continued implementation of various master plans and studies.

The public will have a chance to have a look at, and provide feedback, on the proposed five-year plan Tuesday, Feb. 21.

The city must have its plan finalized by May 15.

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Roger Knox

About the Author: Roger Knox

I am a journalist with more than 30 years of experience in the industry. I started my career in radio and have spent the last 21 years working with Black Press Media.
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