By James Ferguson
April 3, 2014
The operating budget for 2014 is balanced at $45.9 million and that means there will be no need for a tax rate increase in Charlottetown, said Coun. Cecil Villard at the annual budget meeting on March 28.
The balanced budget was made possible through increased revenues from growth of approximately $1.4 million and a one percent increase from the province to the Municipal Support Grant totaling $107,000, Villard said.
It passed 9-0. Coun. Mitch Tweel was not present.
On the expenditure side, there has been an effort made to contain costs wherever possible without impacting on the level of services that were provided in 2013, he said.
Villard said the adoption of this budget means the city will remain strong and well positioned financially for the future.
“We have developed a budget that has responded with programs and services for our citizens and once again, we have ensured the taxpayers of our city they will receive value for their tax dollar.”
Of the expenditures, the utility’s operating budget for 2014 is balanced at $10.5 million, with capital projects totaling $7.9 million, which means there will no increases in either sewer or water rates.
Another expenditure will be a bronze statue depicting the Two John Hamilton Grays on Great George Street, which was recently commissioned by the CADC.
Street construction and resurfacing has been allocated over $2 million of federal gas tax funding with just over $2.7 million being allotted for storm water management in the city. An upgrade both to the traffic and pedestrian signals will be made as well at a cost of $450,000.
Progress will continue with the roundabout at the St. Peter’s Road intersection with $175,000 estimated to undertake the engineering design. The project is anticipated to be done in 2015.
This year, the utility will complete the majority of its work on the city’s new well field site at a cost of just over $2 million.
The fire department will carry over $2.25 million to address both property acquisition and architectural designs of a new fire hall.
There is funding within the budget of the Charlottetown Police Service for two additional officers in order to permanently commit to the school resource officer for both Colonel Gray and Charlottetown Rural high school.
Mayor Clifford Lee said the council has met its objectives for the community.
“It is a privilege to advise the services and programs have been achieved that Coun. Villard addressed, without the need for an increase in tax or utility rates.”