Council passes increased tax budget for 2018

MINDEMOYA—Central Manitoulin municipal council has passed its 2018 budget with a 4.9 percent in the tax millrate.

“I would like to  highlight a couple of items,” said Mayor Richard Stephens at a council meeting last week. He explained how council had arrived at setting this budget millrate, pointing out that the increase is 4.9 percent, which includes capital work projects of $3.1 million being carried out. As well, $175,000 was taken out of the municipal reserves in 2018.

“I think we agree the net result is quite acceptable and provides for capital improvement projects, and we still have manageable reserves and financing,” said Mayor Stephens.

Councillor Derek Stephens further noted that in the life of this current municipal council, “the first year of our term we lowered the tax rate by 15 percent, 10 percent the second year, and then increased the tax rate 4.9 percent the past two years.”

“So taxes are still 15 percent lower than when this council took over,” said Councillor Stephens. “We are going in the right direction.”

Councillor Stephens noted that there are a lot of costs the municipality has no control over, including for instance policing, District Services Board and the Manitoulin Centennial Manor. “We have a lot of uncontrollable costs that we have to contribute to on an  annual basis.”
“To have just over $3 million in capital work to be done and an overall increase in our budget of 4.9 percent is good,” stated Councillor Stephens.

Mayor Stephens thanked municipal office staff for pulling all of this together and the work of the committees involved in the budget process.