Municipal funds pressures intensify, leaving questions on priorities in 2021

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Council has authorized a $1-billion housing and homelessness plan that leans closely on help from different ranges of presidency, but in addition a significant municipal contribution.

Nevertheless, the long-range monetary plan isn’t anticipated to be on council’s agenda till the primary quarter of 2021, the place council is scheduled to approve the 2021 funds in December 2020.

“The place now we have laborious selections to make, the housing disaster might be one of the vital essential to deal with within the metropolis proper now,” Leiper stated. “It’s been exacerbated by the opioid disaster, the pandemic has made it even worse and that has translated to actual price to residents, actual prices to taxpayers, and solely funding in housing may help us reverse these unfavourable impacts of homelessness in our metropolis.”

That second through the committee assembly illustrated the wrestle of municipal budgeting, balancing spending on undoubtedly essential packages with the flexibility of property homeowners to pay extra taxes.

When Leiper wrapped up his feedback, Watson responded: “We additionally need to hold town inexpensive as effectively so our tax price is an inexpensive degree and we’re not placing extra individuals into poverty.”

An anticipated enhance to many OC Transpo fares additionally got here up.

Trevor Haché, representing the Wholesome Transportation Coalition throughout a deputation, flagged the deliberate 2.5 per cent enhance to transit fares and the influence to low-income clients. “Don’t nickel and dime the individuals within the metropolis who’ve the least nickels and dimes,” Haché advised committee members.