TWO PER CENT RAISE IN DAYCARE FEES IN CLARENCE-ROCKLAND
Daycare fees in Clarence-Rockland will be going up by two per cent, starting July 1, 2018.
The two-per-cent increase was passed during the last municipal council meeting, held on Tuesday, April 17. Raising the daycare fees has been an ongoing discussion within municipal council since mid-February of this year. A hike in daycare fees was deemed necessary to resolve a deficit in the budget. Without a raise in these fees, 2018 budget is not balanced.
The two-per-cent raise, however, does not fully balance the budget. After the raise in daycare fees, there is still a deficit of approximately $ 190 000. This is down from the original deficit of almost $ 233 000. Rather than resolve that difference by increasing the tax rate, council has opted to make cuts elsewhere in the 2018 budget.
An approximate 11-per-cent increase in daycare fees was initially proposed, but was rejected by council at the March 21 municipal council meeting. All councillors agreed this was too steep of an increase. Council then asked for the administration to come up with other options to solve the unbalanced budget, with less of an increase to daycare fees.
A group of local mothers addressed council during the latest meeting to emphasize that an 11-per-cent increase would be unreasonable. “It is too fast, and too big of an increase in a short time frame,” said one mother. “I understand there is a deficit and that you have to do something about that, but I speak on behalf of many parents.”
The vote to pass the two-per-cent increase, however, was not unanimous. Many councillors were concerned with where the City would find the money to cover the deficit, without having to raise taxes. All councillors agreed that this was not a viable option.
Mayor Guy Desjardins had proposed a five-per-cent daycare fee raise, which would have brought the deficit to approximately $ 106 000 instead. Councillors Krysta Simard and Jean-Marc Lalonde, on the other hand, were in favour of absorbing the deficit and not raising the daycare fees at all. Councillor Mario Zanth proposed the compromise that would eventually be adopted: a two-percent increase with a remaining deficit of $ 190 000.
The work, however, is not over. The administration must now return to council with proposed budget cuts to eliminate this deficit and balance the budget. More specifically, City staff will be looking into reducing the municipality’s contributions to its reserve fund and capital projects in the
A hike in daycare fees was deemed necessary to resolve a deficit in the budget. The two-per-cent raise, however, does not fully balance the budget.
Les frais de garderie à Clarence-Rockland augmenteront de 2 % à compter du 1er juillet 2018. Cette augmentation a été approuvée lors de la dernière réunion du conseil municipal, le 17 avril. Une hausse des frais de garderie a été jugée nécessaire pour combler un déficit dans le budget. Sans augmentation de ces frais, le budget de 2018 n’est pas équilibré. À la suite de l’augmentation des frais de garde, il y a encore un déficit d’environ 190 000 $. L’administration doit maintenant revenir au conseil avec les compressions budgétaires proposées pour éliminer ce déficit et équilibrer le budget.