MD Council Presented with Proposed Budget

Reeve says there is no intention to raise the mill rate

Director of Finance and Administration, Michael Trabysh presented Council with the first draft of the proposed 2017 Budget. Currently, the proposed budget is sitting at $76,732,271. Included in the budget is the newly instated Inter-Municipal Cooperation Program (IMCP) which along with $50 million in proposed road improvements could have an impact on the MD’s tax revenue of $5.5 million. Despite the impact, Reeve for the MD, Ed Rondeu says he has no intention of increasing the mill rate.

“i think it goes without saying, that we have no intention of raising the mill rates this year; whatsoever,” stated the Reeve. The mill rate is set by the MD and then multiplied by a person or businesses assessed property value, which does not include taxes for the Lakeland Lodge and school requisitions, which will be set by the province later.

Road improvements have been a commitment of Council’s for approximately a decade. For 2017, Trabysh proposed the MD set aside $50 million for road improvements.

$6.6 million for community funding, which includes the Inter-Municipal Cooperation Program. This program provides funding to the MD.’s urban neighbours ; the Village of Glendon, Town of Bonnyville and the City of Cold Lake. “We’ve made that commitment, and now we’re going to have to live with it,” Reeve Rondeau says the MD has no intentions of reducing or ending the program. ”

There is a projected decrease in assessment values coming in 2016 to Residential (five to 20 percent), non-residential (four to 10 percent) and linear properties (up to 14 percent). The proposed impact on the M.D.’s tax revenue could be over $5.5 million. “We have no intention of raising the Mill Rates,” said Reeve Ed Rondeau. “We’ll have to make adjustments elsewhere, maybe do fewer projects.”

Trabysh said there are three options to look at to fund the shortfall, including a projected $4 million surplus in the 2016 budget. Council will review the proposed budget and meet October 11 to discuss changes.