Saanich’s draft budget released Wednesday calls for a 4.43 per cent increase in revenue from property taxes among other hikes.
This figure means that the average single family homeowner will pay $114.47 in additional property taxes. They will also have to absorb an additional $39 to cover the Employer Health Tax (EHT) and higher utility rates approved last December, meaning that the overall property tax increase will be close to six per cent (5.93 per cent).
Overall, the average homeowner will pay about $216 more in 2019 based on a budget premised on zero service reductions.
Deliberations on Saanich’s draft budget — which balances $313,656,900 in revenues and transfers with $313,656,900 in expenditures — are set to start on Feb. 26.
Saanich has announced seven budget meetings until the end of March. They promise to be contentious amidst concerns about the size of the police budget and other issues such as the introduction of the EHT, and spending demands.
The public can follow deliberations in person or online. The public can also share their input on the draft plan with Saanich staff via email at firstname.lastname@example.org and with mayor and council at email@example.com.
Council must adopt the financial plan and final tax rate by May 15, 2019.