Saanich’s 2019 budget is set to increase revenue from property taxes by 5.2 per cent. Black Press File.

Additional revenue lowers Saanich’s proposed tax increase

Saanich is set to raise taxes by 5.2 per cent, down from 5.37 per cent

A revenue increase has lowered the municipal tax increase that Saanich council prepares to adopt Monday.

Higher recreation rates and additional revenues thanks to a grant-in-lieu from BC Hydro has allowed Saanich to lower the requisition of additional revenue from property tax.

While Saanich council had initially agreed to raise revenues from property taxes by 5.37 per cent, the new funding totalling $216,062 lowers the increase to 5.2 per cent. Saanich started budget discussions with a proposed increase of 5.93 per cent.

RELATED: Saanich budget brings 5.37 per cent tax increase

Valla Tinney, Saanich’s director of finance, said average homeowners in Saanich will see the municipal portion of their tax bills rise by $134.51 — down from $139 under the old figure.

A break-down of this increase shows 26.1 per cent of the revenue increase goes towards operations, resource requests and non-discretionary cost; 23.2 per cent will go towards increase spending on capital infrastructure; 19 per cent towards additional policing; and 2.6 per cent toward the Greater Victoria Public Library. Almost 30 per cent of the increase — 28.8 — per cent goes towards covering the Employers’ Health Tax.

RELATED: Saanich council members slam new health tax following release of draft budget

Several councillors have denounced the EHT as a provincial imposition, noting that the actual increase would be below four per cent, in this case 3.7 per cent.

“I’m quite fine going out [to the public] with this budget,” said Coun. Judy Brownoff in late March, a point echoed by Coun. Colin Plant. Like everybody else, he said at the time that he favours lower taxes, but results from Saanich’s citizens survey leave him with the conclusion that council is getting things right.

The 2019 budget includes additional funding for staff that promise to improve bylaw enforcement and the efficiency of Saanich’s development permit application.

Mayor Fred Haynes said in late March that the additional staff will help the municipality grow its commercial base, something that would ultimately help Saanich reduce the tax burden on residents.

When council settled on the initial increase of 5.37 per cent, support was unanimous, but several councillors had expressed reservations about the long-term effects of the increase.

Coun. Ned Taylor expressed the fear that the budget would have a negative impact on affordability for not only homeowners, but also renters.

Coun. Karen Harpercalled on Saanich to continue to look for savings.

Coun. Nathalie Chambers meanwhile had expressed support for additional spending on police.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

wolfgang.depner@saanichnews.com

.

Just Posted

UVic science and engineering research gets $18.8 million federal funding boost

Funding for engineering, science, sustainability research

Horse carriage supporters to rally outside city hall

Owner of carriage company plans rally in response to Coun. Ben Isitt’s motion

Victoria woman competing for role as Maxim cover model

Winning model gets featured spread in magazine, cash price

Father of Saanich murder victim Lindsay Buziak set to appear on Dr. Phil show Friday

Jeff Buziak says he has not seen the show and does not know what to expect

VIDEO: Fun without sun: Hundreds enjoy Family Fest on Victoria Day

Families enjoy activities in Veterans Memorial Park

POLL: Were you satisfied with the Game of Thrones series finale?

Millions gathered in front of their televisions Sunday night to watch the… Continue reading

Greater Victoria wanted list for the week of May 21

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Raptors beat Bucks 120-102 to even series at 2-2

Lowry pours in 25 as Toronto moves within two games of NBA Finals

Body of missing snowmobiler recovered from Great Slave Lake

Police confirm the body is that of one of three missing snowmobilers

Christmas morning burglar sentenced on Vancouver Island

Justin Redmond Feusse, 20, sentenced to 240 days in jail for Dec. 25 break-and-enter

So, do you know ‘Dave from Vancouver Island’?

Ontario man searching for fellow he travelled with in Europe 50 years ago

Toddler seriously injured after falling from Okanagan balcony

RCMP are investigating after a two-year-old boy fell from the balcony of an apartment in Kelowna

Cost jumps 35% for Trans-Canada Highway widening in B.C.

Revelstoke-area stretch first awarded under new union deal

Most Read