Niagara’s Largest Municipality Passes 2017 Budget With 2.8 % Increase

“This budget will help us focus on the key priorities of our strategic plan as we strive to become the most dynamic, innovative, sustainable and livable city in North America.”          — St. Catharines Mayor Walter Sendzik

News from the City of St. Catharines, Ontario

Posted February 28th, 2017 on Niagara At Large

Niagara, Ontario  – St. Catharines City Council has approved the city’s  2017 operating budget.

St. Catharines, Ontario Mayor Walter Sendzik

St. Catharines, Ontario Mayor Walter Sendzik

As a result of the approved budget, property tax bills will go up by about 2.83 per cent over last year’s property tax bill, or about $93 a year for the average property owner with a home valued at $230,000, when regional and education portions are included.

“The Budget Standing Committee worked hard to present a responsible and balanced budget by managing costs and responding to citizens’ priorities to invest in infrastructure, economic development and renewing our parks and public spaces,” said Mayor Walter Sendzik.

“This budget will help us focus on the key priorities of our strategic plan as we strive to become the most dynamic, innovative, sustainable and livable city in North America. Thank you to the Budget Standing Committee and Chair Siscoe for the dedicated work.”

City Council passed the budget Monday following a public meeting at City Hall. The 2017 City budget provides more than $110 million for City services and programs, such as fire protection, recreation programs, street lighting, public transit and more.

The 2017 operating budget once again includes a one per cent infrastructure levy to maintain and repair City roads, buildings, trees, parks and other infrastructure. The infrastructure levy was introduced in the City’s 2016 operating budget.

“The public engagement during this budget cycle has been phenomenal, and residents have been clear about what they were willing to accept,” said Coun. Mat Siscoe, chair of the Budget Standing Committee. “This budget strikes a balance between what residents were okay with and what the City needs to do to continue to offer the services our community relies on.”

The City’s Budget Standing Committee holds year-round financial discussions regarding budgeting to support long-term strategic planning. The committee met 17 times over the last year and reached out to residents and stakeholders for feedback through community consultations, two open houses and the annual telephone town hall to prepare the 2017 operating budget.

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 “A politician thinks of the next election. A leader thinks of the next generation.” – Bernie Sanders

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