Brief: Revelstoke council to consider 5.3% budget increase recommendation

Revelstoke city council is set to complete a proposed 2019 budget and forward it for public comment at their Feb. 12 meeting.

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File photo: Revelstoke's newly elected city council met for the first time on Tuesday,Nov. 6. Photo: Melissa Jameson.

Revelstoke city council will debate a proposed budget increase of 5.3% out for public feedback at their Feb. 12 meeting.

The city’s committee of the whole, which is essentially a committee comprised of city councillors, has been hashing over the city budget for the past few weeks. The committee is now recommending a 5.3% tax increase for council consideration. Council will debate that increase on Tuesday.

The proposed budget contains a number of changes from the original version presented by staff earlier in the year.

A staff request for a 3% increase for core operating expenses was reduced to 2%. The request for a 2% increase to bolster the capital project reserve budget was reduced to 1%.

New staff positions

A staff report itemizes a number of new staff positions for the city.

The city is poised to go ahead with creating a new communications and engagements officer position.

The draft budget proposes hiring a summer student to help with the IT and finance departments.

The draft budget also proposes adding a new development services department manager.

The RCMP’s request for a new sergeant has been recommended by the committee, but not the police request for another constable, nor the request to move the victim services program manager to full time.

The Revelstoke Golf Club’s request for $50,000 in annual funding has also been recommended.

Tax implications for residents

The division of the additional tax burden between various tax classes has not yet been determined, but city staff prepared an impact assessment for the proposed increases.

When increases to water, sewer, and garbage fees are factored in, the proposed budget increase adds $92.95 to the annual tax bill at $100,000 of assessed value on a residential property.

For a home valued at $250,000, the annual increase will be $121.37

For a home valued at $450,000, the annual increase would be $159.27.

Council is set to debate the proposed increase at their Feb. 12 meeting. There may be additional changes at that meeting. Once the budget document is finalized, the budget package will then go out for public comment, then return to council for further consideration.

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Aaron Orlando
Aaron Orlando is the Creative Director of revelstokemountaineer.com and Revelstoke Mountaineer Magazine. He's worked in Revelstoke as a journalist and editor for the past ten years. Got tips on Revelstoke news, entertainment, sports, outdoor life, community or anything else? Email aaron@revelstokemountaineer.com or call/text Aaron at 250-814-8710.