By Kevin Woodhouse
Most residents of Baie d’Urfé, can expect the status quo with no tax increases while almost a third of all single family homes will actually see their taxes decrease slightly.
Mayor Maria Tutino told The Suburban that 2015’s numbers appear to be “a good news budget for our citizens once again.”
Baie d’Urfé was able to keep taxes at status quo levels even though the Liberal government’s austerity measures resulted in $70,000 less in revenue as well as another $32,000 due to cuts to schools within the territory.
Home evaluations went up almost seven percentage points over last year for an average residence in the little town costing $612,628. Water consumption costs will remain stable at a basic 489 price tag for 50,000 gallons per year with a tariff for excess use.
The town’s local operating budget for 2015 is $7,105,100, a 6.6 per cent increase ($439,300) over last year with a total operating budget of $18,381,180. The revenue portion destined for the Montreal agglomeration taxes is $11,276,080 for an increase of one and a half per cent over last year or a total of 73 per cent of Baie d’Urfé’s budget headed for Montreal.
For the city’s three year capital expenditure program, some of next year’s projects include “an investment in sound reduction berms that are included in the three-year capital program with the funding coming entirely from general surplus,” explained Tutino. “The cost estimate will be $1,500,000 over five years.”
Next year will also see the implementation of a financial aid strategy for residents who need help in the maintenance treatment or removal of ash trees. There could also be money, again derived from the city’s surplus, “for tree planting to ensure that the town’s canopy remains strong and an asset and a source of pride for all citizens,” noted Tutino.
Some funds have also been set aside for the treatment of ash trees found on public land, almost 3,000.
Another project slated for 2015 that will be funded through the city’s surplus fund will be the town hall’s expansion. But before initiating the project, “council will try to determine the most cost-effective way to meet the Town’s needs,” the mayor noted. “Citizens’ input will be an important part of this discussion, and special information sessions will be held for this purpose.”