include such prudent measures as leveraging grant opportunities and investing in reserves for future needs and unforeseen projects. As in the past, the budget maintains infrastructure as a top priority.
The Capital Budget increased this year over last bringing it to $38 million. Of this, $18.5 million will be spent on roads and bridges with a budgetary emphasis on gravel resurfacing. In addition, there is reinvestment in valued community assets, including parking lots and boat launches ($100,000), and the refurbishment of current assets to avoid new build costs. For example, the Coboconk Fire Station will be updated to accommodate the Paramedic Service ($445,000).
There was unanimous support from council for an $8 million investment in a new City of Kawartha Lakes multi-purpose, energy efficient space to house both their Human Services office and 24 social housing units. This project is cost neutral to the taxpayer due to provincial grants while it will increase the municipality’s capital assets.
There was good news in the Water and Wastewater Capital and Operating budget process: new federal and provincial grants have resulted in a lower than expected average increase for water and wastewater users: from 4.8% in 2016 to 2.84% in 2017. These grants will support required upgrades to CKL’s extensive water and wastewater systems, reducing the user’s financial burden. This funding has been secured for the next 3 – 4 years.
Still to be approved, council will deliberate the 2017 Operating Budget on December 6 at 9 am in Council Chambers. Community members are welcome to attend. The 2017 budget can be found on the City of Kawartha Lakes website under: City Hall >Departments >Corporate Services >Budget and Financial Planning.