LaSalle to de­bate 2.84 per cent tax hike for 2018

Prov­ince’s move to boost min­i­mum wage a rea­son for pro­posed bud­get in­crease

Windsor Star - - CITY + REGION - JULIE KOTSIS jkot­sis@post­ twit­­sis

The prov­ince’s pend­ing min­i­mum wage leg­is­la­tion led to a pro­posed 2.84 per cent mu­nic­i­pal tax in­crease in LaSalle’s 2018 draft bud­get, ac­cord­ing to the town’s deputy trea­surer.

“We’ve bud­geted for about a 50-per-cent, worse-case sce­nario if ev­ery­thing goes through … and that’s $700,000,” said Dale Lan­glois, adding that Bill 148 has just passed sec­ond read­ing.

Lan­glois said the pro­posed min­i­mum wage in­crease and other changes in the Fair Work­places, Bet­ter Jobs Act — in­clud­ing on­call pay and equal pay for equal work reg­u­la­tions — would all con­trib­ute to the town’s in­creased wage costs.

If the 2.84 per cent in­crease is ap­proved by coun­cil, the owner of an av­er­age home val­ued at $250,000 would see a tax in­crease of $67.50 per year.

“As far as the in­crease, that’s some­thing that we all ex­pect,” said Mayor Ken An­taya.

“Bill 148 is (ex­pected to have) a grave im­pact on the town and our po­lice, our fire — all our em­ploy­ees are re­ceiv­ing in­creases, ben­e­fits are go­ing up, in­sur­ance is go­ing up.

“So you have to de­ter­mine, are you go­ing to eat these costs? Or do you re­duce the level of ser­vice in the com­mu­nity,” he said. “We haven’t got an ap­petite for re­duc­ing ser­vice.”

Lan­glois said $14,779,000 is al­lo­cated for cap­i­tal projects in the draft bud­get.

Some of the higher-priced projects, which Lan­glois said might not nec­es­sar­ily be done in 2018, in­clude a fire sub­sta­tion ($2.7 mil­lion), road re­con­struc­tion ($1.75 mil­lion), a mill and pave pro­gram ($500,000) and en­hanced mill and paving work ($500,000).

The draft bud­get al­lo­cates $1 mil­lion for drainage and storm sewer work and $500,000 for side­walks, street lights and trails.

The pro­posed op­er­at­ing bud­get is pegged at $32,206,100, an in­crease of $3,079,000 over 2017.

Lan­glois said an es­ti­mated twoper-cent county rate in­crease and mi­nus-four-per-cent ed­u­ca­tion rate would bring the to­tal prop­erty tax hike for a LaSalle prop­erty owner to 1.83 per cent — a $73 in­crease on a $250,000 home.

Bud­get de­lib­er­a­tions will be­gin Dec. 13 at 9:30 a.m. in coun­cil cham­bers. They will con­tinue Dec. 14 and Dec. 15, as needed.

The 2018 pre­lim­i­nary draft bud­get re­port can be found on the town’s web­site at

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