Council Approves the 2005 Regional Budget
I am pleased to announce to you that Regional Council approved the 2005 Current and Capital Budget on Thursday, December 9, 2004.
The 2005 Current Budget was approved at $1.1 billion and the consolidated 10 year capital plan totalling $2.7 billion for the 10-year period spanning 2005 to 2014 with $331 million to be spent in 2005. There will be a property tax rate increase of 3.2 per cent (or $44 to the average homeowner) mainly for policing and provincially mandated programs. For the first time in 14 years, a percentage of a tax increase was approved for non-police services.
There will also be an average water and wastewater utility rate increase of 5 per cent (or $15 per household this year) effective April 1. Key drivers necessitating the increase are growth, legislation requirements set out in the Safe Drinking Water Act, increased energy and insurance costs and the maintenance of aging infrastructure.
I am also pleased to announce that the 2005 Budget lists a number of program enhancements. A key guiding principle in this exercise was ensuring that we would be able to continue providing the highest level of service to our residents while minimizing the tax impact.
Service delivery enhancements include:
- the implementation of previous decisions, including the operation of two long term care facilities: Malton Village and Tall Pines
- 330 new subsidized childcare spaces including special needs resources for 90 children
- 26,000 new service hours for ambulance services, which is equivalent to operating three vehicles 24/7
- Enhanced waste diversion programs
- 32 public health staff
- A transportation Accessibility Co-ordinator
- Increased investments to reducing traffic congestion throughout the Region
- 30 additional front line police officers
With respect to our longer-term Capital Budget, the Region continues to be debt-free and continues to not rely on any external debt financing to accomplish our business objectives.
A special thank you to all who were involved in the production of the 2005 budget and I would like to recognize all staff for their dedication and first class service to the residents of the Region of Peel. You should be very proud of your continued leadership and commitment to serving Peel taxpayers.
Thursday July 26 2007