Association of Suburban Municipalities react to Plante Budget

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Pointe Claire Protest 2018
West Island residents gathered in protest of Plante's first buget in Jan 2018

By WIB Staff

Last week, the Association of Suburban Municipalities (ASM) drafted a 10 page response document to the recent city of Montreal budget put forward by Mayor Valerie Plante.

The ASM document was prepared by Westmount Mayor Christina Smith and Beaconsfield Mayor Georges Bourelle addressed to Plante as well as the Standing Committee of the Agglomeration Council on Finance and Administration (CFA).

The tone of the document was more positive considering that last January, West Island Blog founder Rhonda Massad organized a very well attended tax protest in January denouncing the increased tax rates for demerged cities as the municiplaiites did not feel that they were properly consulted.

The report stated that “it should be recalled that in the 2018 budget, the demerged municipalities’ average contribution increased by 5.3%, more than three times the projected inflation rate of 1.7%. Moreover, the elected ASM representatives were made aware of these drastic increases only a few hours before the budget was tabled, an unacceptable way of doing business with partners.”

The most recent city of Montreal budget, deposited this past November 8th, was noted by the ASM response as being more transparent for the “allowing all demerged municipalities to carry out their work in full knowledge of facts. The ASM hopes that this new practice will continue within the City of Montreal.”

According to the Conference Board of Canada, the estimated inflation hike for the next year will be %1.7 and the ASM expects the tax bill from Montreal for the demerged cities to be in the two percent range.

The report’s final note is that the released document was not meant as a “manifestation of hostility on the part of the demerged municipalities” but moreover that the ASM’s document should be acknowledged as an “addendum” to the Plante and CFA budget that the ASM has given its full support.

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