Preliminary budget forecasts 4% tax increase in City of Kawartha Lakes

Canada

If you live in the City of Kawartha Lakes, you may be paying an extra 4 per cent on your 2019 property tax bill.

“We’re finalizing preliminary budgets that are on track with our 10-year financial plan. We’ve managed to include additional proposed projects and services while maintaining the tax-supported budget at the forecasted increase,” said Jennifer Stover, director of corporate services.

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The city has three budgets: capital budget, operating budget and water and wastewater budget.

The proposed expenditure in the capital budget is $48.5 million, the highest level in the municipality’s history.  Major capital projects include investments in roads, emergency services buildings, public parks and arenas as well as several multi-year initiatives.

Next year is the second year of a three-year, $4.1-million program to rehabilitate gravel roads, with $1.4 million allocated in 2019.

The municipality will resurface urban and arterial roadways at a cost of $4.6 million in 2019 and resurface rural hardtop roads for $3.6 million in 2019, based on the five-year roads capital plan.

Bobcaygeon Beach Park will be redeveloped.  The city’s investment in 2019 is to develop the park into a multi-use recreation property and to expand the park and its recreational amenities and to enhance tourism.

Logie Street Park redevelopment in Lindsay will be finalized for $1.4 million in 2019 out of a project total of $4.5 million.

The reconstruction and redevelopment of Downtown Lindsay, a major investment in roads, water, sewer and streetscape assets over 2019-2021, starting with $6 million for Russell Street and Peel Street in 2019, will begin.

A total of $1.4 million has been set aside for construction and renovations of arenas (new roofs, flooring, ice work) in 2019.

“I’m thrilled that we see our growth and development citywide continuing to head in a very positive direction. New development has contributed $1.6 million in tax assessment growth to our bottom line, reducing the burden on taxpayers,” Mayor Andy Letham said.

WATCH: City of Kawartha Lakes mayor Andy Letham talks area issues, city council cuts, and basic income program cancellation

Water and wastewater user fees are expected to increase by three per cent next year.

“We continue to ready the city for the growth we’re attracting by investing strategically in infrastructure. A good example of this is the construction of the new Colborne Street pumping station, largely financed by development charges through new residential and commercial developments in Lindsay,” added Letham.

The water and wastewater capital budget includes:

  • Continuing to invest the $5.8 million small communities fund grant to support the replacement of cast iron water mains.
  • Finalization of the new Colborne Street sewage pumping station.
  • A $1.4-million upgrade to the Fenelon Falls Water Treatment Plant to secure treatment capacity and maintain regulatory compliance.

The draft proposed budget will be available online for the public at the end of November.  The new council will debate the budget in the new year.  A complete budget timeline is available online at www.kawarthalakes.ca/budget

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