Council passes ‘Good News’ 2016 Water and Wastewater budget
“There’s no question this budget is good news for users of the City’s 21 municipal water and six wastewater systems,” said CAO Ron Taylor. “After right-sizing the budget for 2015, increasing the combined rate by 4.8% and applying the increase directly to the Infrastructure Levy will help build the necessary reserves for future needs.”
Mr. Taylor said that investment in the contributions to the Infrastructure Levy will start to help ensure the City is well positioned for future infrastructure needs in the water and wastewater department.
Director of Public Works Bryan Robinson explained that greater departmental efficiencies and changes to the budget in 2015 made a big impact on the 2016 budget.
“Due to financial efficiencies gained within the water and wastewater area and right sizing the user rate in 2015, the City is able to maintain the existing fixed and consumption rates,” he said
Council’s approved a 10% increase to the blended rate in 2015, combined with reduced operating expenses and the approved 4.8% increase for 2016, the City is moving closer to financial sustainability in the water and wastewater division.
As part of the 2016 budget Council approved an increase of $1.5 million to their self-imposed debt ceiling of $48 million if required.
The 4.8% increase approved by Council equates to an annual charge to water and wastewaters users of approximately $64 annually over 2015.
“The challenge of providing water and wastewater servicing to multiple geographically dispersed systems has proven to be financially onerous for the City,” said CAO Ron Taylor. “Staff and Council has done a tremendous job in both reducing expenses while beginning to address the long term infrastructure needs of the City’s 26 systems.”
For more information please contact:
Director of Public Works
705-324-9411 Ext. 1143