Oakville is growing and building – with major projects such as the Trafalgar Park Revitalization Project and the South East Community Centre – and its 2018 budget takes these initiatives into account.
Town staff presented Oakville’s proposed 2018 operating and capital budgets to the budget committee on Nov. 21.
An overall property tax increase of 1.94 per cent is on the table for homeowners in Oakville.
The budget recommendation yields a 3.04 per cent increase to the town’s portion of the tax bill, for an overall property tax increase of 1.94 per cent when combined with the estimated regional and educational tax levies.
The proposed increase would see residential property taxes increase by $15.47 per $100,000 of assessment meaning that the owner of a home assessed at $800,000 would pay an additional $123.76 per year or $2.38 per week.
“The proposed budget is consistent with council’s commitment to keep property taxes in line with inflation,” said Mayor Rob Burton.
“It provides the funds necessary to enhance the town’s infrastructure and deliver the high-quality services our residents expect, while keeping our financial future strong, stable and healthy.”
In the town’s Draft 2018 Operating Budget, staff is recommending a $321.5 million operating budget that will support the delivery of a wide range of programs and services including maintenance of roads and community facilities, fire services, transit, parks and trails, recreation and culture, senior services, libraries, and a host of other important services.
The budget includes funding for the opening of the new Trafalgar Park Community Centre (Oakville Arena redevelopment) in fall 2018 and the expansion of enforcement hours for by-law services.
The budget committee also reviewed the town’s Draft 2018 Capital Budget which sees $128.4 million in funding invested in transportation, infrastructure renewal and other growth-related facilities.
Some key capital projects for 2018 include the completion of the Trafalgar Park Revitalization Project, the start of construction for the South East Community Centre (as part of the Former Hospital Site Project), development of a new fire station and library branch in north Oakville, new dockage for the Bronte Outer Harbour and continuation of the town’s Emerald Ash Borer Management Program.
The town’s 2018 road resurfacing program will be the largest in Oakville’s history, at a cost of $9.6 million.
The budget also includes transportation funding for a number of projects such as the reconstruction of Speers Rd. and Sixth Line north of Dundas St.
The annual budget process also includes the budget committee’s review of the town’s rates and fees for programs and services offered to the community (such as transit fares and recreation and culture program fees), and the estimated costs of administering and enforcing the Building Code Act and the Planning Act.
The proposed budget takes into account the impact of the province’s minimum wage increase to $14, from $11.60,, coming into effect Jan. 1.
The town’s parks and open space and recreation and culture departments are significantly impacted by the increase and the town is adjusting the budgets to recognize the higher pay levels.
“Council continues to work to build fiscally responsible budgets that make strategic investments in our community, while maintaining services for our residents. Our decisions will be made in the context of keeping overall tax increases in line with inflation,” said budget committee chairman Tom Adams.
“The budget committee will be reviewing the budget over the next few weeks before making a recommendation for council consideration on Dec. 18. I encourage residents to get involved by providing feedback to us on the proposed budget during our open and public process.”
The final recommended budget will go forward to council for approval on Dec. 18. Residents are encouraged to get involved through the following opportunities:
Budget Open Houses
· Saturday, Nov. 25 from 10 a.m. until 11 a.m. at Queen Elizabeth Park Community and Cultural Centre (Main Lobby).
· Tuesday, Dec. 5 from 7 p.m. until 8 p.m. at Iroquois Ridge Library (Creation Zone).
Budget Committee and Council Meetings
· Thursday, Nov. 23 at 9:30 a.m. – staff presentations
· Tuesday, Nov. 28 at 9:30 a.m. – public delegations
· Thursday, Nov.30 at 7 p.m. – public delegations
· Tuesday, Dec.12 at 9:30 a.m. – budget committee deliberations
· Monday, Dec. 18 at 7 p.m. – council approval of the 2018 budget
All budget committee and council meetings take place in council chamber at Town Hall, located at 1225 Trafalgar Rd.