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