Its that time of year again.
No, not Halloween…thats over. Not Christmas time either. Its 2013 BUDGET TIME.
Now these words normally spread fear in the hearts and minds (and therefore changes the sleeping patterns) of elected officials but its a very important time of the year. If youve been reading the local papers, other Halton area municipalities are beginning their budget discussions. Just today, there was an overview of the Halton 2013 budget presented to regional council and should be made available online today www.halton.ca/budget for public view.
The Town of Milton budget will be available a little later this month on November 26th…unless they get it ready sooner. Id much prefer to have it available earlier as to give members of council and the public time to go over some of the major projects underway. The town does have budget call reports throughout the year as Ive posted on my blog many times and this is the final budget to be reviewed before the meeting on December 10th and 11th.
As I outlined on my Twitter feed earlier today from the Regional Council meeting, here are some of the highlights of the 2013 Halton budget overview.
* Long term plan for Halton might be increases at or around rate of inflation. Provincial cutbacks might throw curve ball in future years.
10:17 AM – 14 Nov 12
* Clr Meed Ward asking what can future years increase look like for Halton & sites her experience in Burlington with spiked tax inc’s.
10:16 AM – 14 Nov 12
* Are we preparing for more download from province of services due to their financial condition at the Region of Halton?
10:14 AM – 14 Nov 12
* Reg Clr Meed Ward is concerned about the “party being over” for 0% increases. Inflation right now roughly 1.8% now.
10:08 AM – 14 Nov 12
* Reg Clr Colin Best asks questions re MPAC to ensure speed of new assessments. #MiltonON growth closer to 8% rather than 1.5% region wide.
10:07 AM – 14 Nov 12
* Region of #Halton continues to have a triple A credit rating
10:04 AM – 14 Nov 12
* 66% of $3.9 B in growth related infrastructure all funded by development charges #Halton
10:03 AM – 14 Nov 12
* Timing of project depends on allocation programs in 2013 and beyond. #Halton
10:02 AM – 14 Nov 12
* On the Capital side $3.9 B ten year program for transportation, waste management projects etc…#Halton
9:59 AM – 14 Nov 12
$584K for new waste diversion programs to increase life of the landfill which is “the most important asset of the region of #Halton“
9:55 AM – 14 Nov 12
Rate impact for #Halton ends up being zero due to GTA pooling savings.
9:54 AM – 14 Nov 12
* Assessment growth is expected to be 1.5% (new prop)#Halton MPAC assessments have been done. If you’ve incr more than avg taxes might go up.
9:52 AM – 14 Nov 12
* Region of #Halton budget to be put online in packet format to help those who use tablets as well.
9:49 AM – 14 Nov 12
SO needless to say the next few weeks will be busy reading these documents, finding out where money is being spent and getting feedback from the public on both the Region of Halton and Town of Milton budgets. From time to time here on my blog, I will be posting reports and some feedback I have about the budgets and I hope you take time to read them.
For those of you who are interested, there will be a budget “information session” at the Milton Sports Centre on Wednesday November 28th in Room #4 from 7pm to 9pm for you to be able to ask questions and give us feedback and your thoughts on the Milton and Region of Halton budgets for 2013. Regional Councillor Colin Best, myself and hopefully some more of our council colleagues will be there. Send me an email firstname.lastname@example.org if youre interested in attending.