Ashcroft plans tax hike of 2.5%

Ashcroft Council takes their decision to the public at a town hall meeting May 4, 7 pm in the community hall.

Ashcroft Council is planning a tax increase of 2.5 per cent this year for residential properties, which is lower than anticipated.

Council gave approval to the first three readings of Bylaw 794, its 2015 Five-Year Financial Plan, at the Apr. 27 Council meeting. It also gave preliminary readings to Tax Rates Bylaw 795. Both bylaws need one more final reading before they are adopted.

Coun. Alf Trill asked about a large increase in user fees in the fourth year (2018) of the five-year plan. Administrator Michelle Allen said the increased figures represent costs associated with the new water treatment plant once it’s in place.

The Village is expecting to collect $505,000 in user fees this year. They increase for the following to years to $648,962 in 2017 and then jump to $750,092 in 2018.

“That’s a big jump,” agreed Mayor Jack Jeyes.

Property taxes account for less than one-third of the 2015 $3,626,256 municipal budget. Just over $1 million comes from property taxes; plus $500,000 in user fees; just under half a million in accumulated surplus; over $800,000 in expected grants from various levels of government and income from several other areas make up the budget revenue.

Ashcroft is holding a town hall meeting on May 4 to present the budget and listen to feedback.