By Chad Ingram
Published Jan. 31 2019
Minden Hills councillors have some work ahead of them attempting to reduce the size of the tax levy increase in the first draft of the township’s 2019 budget.
Council began the first round of its budget discussions during a Jan. 24 meeting and the tax levy increase in the first draft was sitting at more than 17 per cent.
Mayor Brent Devolin who noted that number would have to come way down said the first round of budget talks was a bit of wish list attempt for the township’s department heads.
“The first round . . . in my mind is akin to when I was a kid and I put my Christmas list in to my parents or Santa” Devolin said. “It’s all the things that department heads feel that we should do ought to do . . . that are important. There isn’t any expectation that they’re going to get them all.”
Devolin indicated the size of the tax levy increase in the first draft was too large and would need to be reduced.
“Obviously if you look at where the global number is that’s not happening” he said.
“There’s probably $700000 that has to come out of the budget” Devolin told members of council adding that even that amount may not be enough to get the tax increase down to a palatable level.
“We’re going to have to make some tough decisions this year.”
It is not uncommon for Minden Hills council to have three or four rounds of budget discussions before a final budget is passed. Last year the tax increase in the township was 8.6 per cent.
The first round of budget talks was scheduled to continue during a Jan. 31 meeting.