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Council continuing work on 2002 budget


As town council continues to work on the 2002 municipal budget, some details on any tax hikes are becoming clear, CAO Bill Naturkach said Monday.

“We’re looking at a 1.1 percent levy increase in total,” he noted. “At this point, there’s no tax increases in the industrial or commercial sectors, and there will be a two percent increase for residential.”

The committee of the whole had a special meeting Friday afternoon to discuss the budget, and will do so again during its regular meeting Tuesday (that meeting was pushed back one day due to the Remembrance Day holiday today).

“We’ve made progress. We’ve probably got through a third of the details,” said Naturkach. “And we continue to get the information from the . . . departments.

“It’s the ‘grunt work’ of council to make sure all the information and details are accurate,” he added.

Council has until April to finalize the 2002 budget but Naturkach noted it will be wrapped up well before that date. Sept. 13 was council’s original target date to complete the budget.

In other news, Naturkach said it’s possible council will decide on who will be the town’s 2001 “Citizen of the Year” on Tuesday.

The selection committee, consisting of former honourees Bill Gushulak and Mark Kowalchuk, as well Coun. Deane Cunningham and Mayor Glenn Witherspoon, is slated to make its recommendation to council during the in-camera portion of the meeting.

But Naturkach said he didn’t know if this year’s “Citizen of the Year” would be announced during the public session Tuesday night.

Tuesday’s meeting starts at 4 p.m. with a strategic planning session. Council then will go in-camera from 5-5:50 p.m., after which the public session resumes.

Other business at the meeting will include:

•a report on the 2001 final tax bills;

•an update on the new Customs facility:

•an update on the Riverwalk condominium project;

•tenders for sewer replacement and a watermain extension on Eighth Street;

•discussion of Bill 111 (the Municipal Act);

•a request for funding for the Connect Ontario/GeoSmart Project Business Plan;

•a report on the “Ice for Kids” fund;

•motions to increase landfill tipping fees and cemetery fees;

•an update on building activity for October; and

•council appointments to various town boards and committees.

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