Council amends budget bylaw

The City of Armstrong has given three readings to a bylaw amendment that will adjust the 2014 budget

Sometimes, stuff happens.

The City of Armstrong has given three readings to a bylaw amendment that will adjust the already approved 2014-2018 budget.

“We have a five-year budget in place but, things come up every year which fall outside of the approved budget,” said Coun. John Trainor, chairperson of the city’s finance committee.

Five suggested changes have been recommended to the five-year budget with three of them dealing with the city needing to upgrade its computer network.

The city plans to increase the capital budget this year from $15,000 to $41,000 for the computer network replacement. The additional $26,000 would be funded from short-term borrowing. The original $15,000 would be funded from general revenue.

Debt servicing for the computer network would include a small amount this year, and principal payments of $6,500 per year from 2015-2018.

An extra $21,000 would be required beginning in 2015 to cover the cost of the network maintenance, data backup and storage, e-mail, software and web hosting.

Funding for both issues would come from general revenue.

A total of $2,300 in unfunded centennial expenses have shown up this year. It’s recommended by city staff that funding come from a budget variance for council indemnities.

“A vacant seat on council has created some cost savings,” said chief financial officer Terry Martens, referring to Ryan Nitchie stepping down in the summer to pursue employment opportunities in Salmon Arm.

The Pleasant Valley Road watermain project was deferred to 2015 due to all tenders coming in over budget for the project.

Staff recommends the project be included for 2015 so tenders can be issued early in the new year.

It is also suggested that the scope of the project be expanded to include a full asphalt overlay.

Estimated total cost of the expanded project would be $316,000 with funding coming from road and water reserves.

Council unanimously approved the three readings.