Rate drops, levy rises

The Glengarry News - - News - -- Richard Ma­honey

Faced with a re­duc­tion in pro­vin­cial fund­ing, North Stor­mont coun­cil has ap­proved in prin­ci­ple its 2019 mu­nic­i­pal bud­get that in­creases its to­tal mu­nic­i­pal tax rev­enues by five per cent.

How­ever, be­cause overall as­sess­ment has in­creased by 7.12 per cent, the mu­nic­i­pal­ity can gen­er­ate more rev­enue even though its tax rate has dropped.

The township por­tion on an as­sess­ment of $100,000 has de­creased from $359 to $347.

In 2018, mu­nic­i­pal taxes on an av­er­age res­i­den­tial prop­erty as­sessed at $204,000 were $734. This year, the owner of an av­er­age home as­sessed at $210,000 will pay $729 in mu­nic­i­pal prop­erty taxes. In­di­vid­ual re­sults may vary. The net in­crease is five per cent on all prop­er­ties. The tax rate is dif­fer­ent de­pend­ing if it’s res­i­den­tial, com­mer­cial, in­dus­trial or farm, points out finance di­rec­tor Catherine Borelly.

The num­bers do not ac­count for the United Coun­ties of Stor­mont, Dun­das and Glen­garry levies and school boards’ req­ui­si­tions.

For ev­ery tax dol­lar spent, 32 cents are re­tained by the mu­nic­i­pal­ity; 53 go to the coun­ties and 15 to ed­u­ca­tion.

The pro­vin­cial fund­ing al­lo­ca­tion for North Stor­mont was re­duced by $119,500 in 2018 and an­other $101,600 in 2019 for a to­tal of $221,100. This equates to an eight per cent re­duc­tion in pro­vin­cial fund­ing.

“Based on our re­quire­ments, the Township needed to com­pen­sate for this huge re­duc­tion,” says the mu­nic­i­pal­ity.

“Like ev­ery house­hold, the township needs to bud­get ac­cord­ing to cost in­creases for fuel, goods and ser­vices, labour, etc. in or­der to main­tain lo­cal ser­vices such as waste man­age­ment, fire ser­vices and roads,” said Mayor Jim Wert.

“How­ever, we also need to be cog­nizant of in­creas­ing our re­serves. Our cap­i­tal in­fra­struc­ture needs investment and there­fore dol­lars to sup­port these ex­pen­di­tures are also re­quired. The res­i­dents of North Stor­mont re­ceive good value for their tax dol­lars.”

Some 2019 mu­nic­i­pal bud­get high­lights in­clude: build­ing depart­ment soft­ware, re­place­ment of a 20-year-old snow plow, three bridge re­place­ments, and fire depart­ment pagers. The bud­get will for­mally be adopted in April.

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