Current budget plan puts property tax increase at 2.67%

By Jill Sperling
February 21, 2017 - 5:10pm Updated: February 21, 2017 - 5:46pm

KAMLOOPS — During another round of budget talks city council discussed a long list of costly supplemental items, many of which threatened to increase taxes for Kamloops residents. 

When budget discussions began the city was looking at a four per cent increase in taxes. However, by shifting some projects away from taxation council managed to lower the tax increase to 2.67 per cent. 

One such item was a $180,000 pedestrian signal on Tranquille Road at Cambridge Crescent. 

"The crossing will at this point still proceed," said mayor Peter Milobar, "but it won't be funded out of taxation. We'll use the community works fund or gaming grants or a combination to fund that. 

"That's what we were trying to do today, is find some of these projects that are a one-time expenditure without an ongoing cost to them to see could we fund them from some of our other funds that are restricted because they need to be used in that type of manner."

Other projects were completely cut, such as transit exchange drinking fountans and porta potties Downtown and on the North Shore. 

A public budget meeting is scheduled to take place in a week's time, and there could be more changes to the budget at that time. 

"Some people may be disappointed a certain project was left off will be able to come and advocate why maybe we should add it back in," Milobar said. "Likewise, people who didn't see a project at all in the budget may still want to see something, or something we've approved people may show up and tell us we should still consider cutting that. That's really what this is about next week we're getting the last look at it with the public."

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