Seek­ing city bud­get freeze

A res­o­lu­tion for a city-wide bud­get freeze is ex­pected to be tabled at Timmins coun­cil for de­bate tonight

The Daily Press (Timmins) - - FRONT PAGE - LEN GILLIS

a pre­vi­ously dis­cussed res­o­lu­tion for a city-wide bud­get freeze is com­ing back to Timmins coun­cil for de­bate.

and the res­o­lu­tion has been some­what beefed-up.

Camp­bell first sug­gested the idea of a bud­get freeze in a onepage res­o­lu­tion sub­mit­ted to coun­cil on oct. 24, 2017. as that idea was be­ing de­bated that night, it was ap­par­ent that sev­eral coun­cil mem­bers were not to­tally in favour of pass­ing the res­o­lu­tion.

Coun. Noella ri­naldo felt it was leav­ing a neg­a­tive im­pres­sion.

Coun. Pat bam­ford felt it was too one-sided.

Coun. mike doody said once a bud­get is pre­sented to coun­cil, in­di­vid­ual coun­cil­lors would know how to vote if they felt the bud­get was too high.

mayor steve black said the pro­jected as­sess­ment losses were not as bad as sug­gested.

be­fore the is­sue was put to a vote — a vote that ap­peared on the verge of de­feat­ing the res­o­lu­tion — Coun. Wal­ter Wawrza­szek stepped in and re­quested a de­fer­ral.

“i would like to see this de­ferred be­cause i think it is writ­ten up in a way that Coun. Camp­bell prob­a­bly didn’t want to do it. Coun. bam­ford brought up some good points there. and i would like to see some of his points put in with Coun. Camp­bell rewrit­ing it if he wants to,” said Wawrza­szek that night.

The vote to de­fer was ap­proved.

Tonight’s meet­ing is coun­cil’s first since oct. 24.

un­der the new res­o­lu­tion to be pre­sented tonight, Camp­bell is ask­ing that all city-wide spend­ing for 2018 be frozen at 2017 lev­els, un­til such time that a de­tailed eco­nomic re­port be sub­mit­ted to coun­cil.

Camp­bell’s re­quest is for a full freeze on new spend­ing “un­til a com­plete de­tailed pub­lic re­port is sub­mit­ted to coun­cil for the years 2018-2021, by trea­sury, rec­og­niz­ing the eco­nomic chal­lenges fac­ing the city go­ing for­ward over that pe­riod — and in­di­cat­ing in de­tail where these fu­ture fi­nan­cial short­falls will be made up as to pro­tect city tax­pay­ers from ma­jor tax­a­tion in­creases.”

Camp­bell, in his res­o­lu­tion, states Timmins is fac­ing “se­ri­ous eco­nomic chal­lenges in the very near fu­ture” along with job losses, less tax rev­enue and a de­cline in the pur­chase of goods and ser­vices.

The res­o­lu­tion said this would be the re­sult of an­nounced clo­sures and cut­backs at lo­cal min­ing prop­er­ties in­clud­ing the Gold­corp dome un­der­ground in 2018, the Gold­corp hollinger Pit in 2019, the de beers vic­tor mine in 2019, and the Kidd mine in 2021.

it was not re­vealed whether such a de­tailed re­port could ac­tu­ally be com­piled by the city’s fi­nance depart­ment, how long it might take or whether the sug­gested scope of the re­port might mean go­ing out­side of city hall and hir­ing a con­sul­tant.

LEN GILLIS/THE DAILY PRESS

City coun­cil­lor Joe Camp­bell will be ask­ing for the 2018 city bud­get to be frozen at 2017 lev­els un­til coun­cil is pro­vided with some sort of fore­cast for the fu­ture eco­nomic sta­bil­ity of Timmins. The is­sue was de­bated in Oc­to­ber but a vote on the res­o­lu­tion was de­ferred un­til this weekís meet­ing of coun­cil.

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