What Will Milton Residents be Paying for in Tax Dollars in 2019?
The new year is fast approaching.
So, it’s time to start organizing and planning your goals.
The town of Milton has already started.
According to the town, Milton will soon be gearing up to prepare its capital and operating budgets for 2019.
The committee of the whole will meet on Dec. 10, and Dec. 11 if needed, to plan the town's 2019 budget.
The approval of this budget is anticipated for January 2019.
To represent Milton and its residents accurately, a survey was conducted in order for the town to set priorities for programs, services, and infrastructure going forward.
The survey was conducted both via telephone and online
Here's what it showed.
Majority of Milton residents value the services provided by the town and preferred increasing or maintaining the funding for them, 56 per cent of telephone respondents saw value in the services provided by the town, and 40 per cent of online respondents said the same.
Setting aside funding in order to replace infrastructure in the years to come is to be considered important, 70 per cent of telephone respondents noted that this was important and 51 per cent of online respondents said the same.
For the most part, Milton residents want to see an increased investment in road maintenance.
For the most part residents seemed to agree on a lot, however, they were divided in regards to how taxation affordability (levels) should be balanced with service levels.
Milton is growing. Actually, in the next 15 years, its population is expected to double from its 2017 population of 117, 667.
With that being said, it is important to note that financial impacts that result from growth, in addition to the infrastructure funding deficit, and staffing shortfalls challenge the financial resources of the town.
To combat this, one goal outlined in the town's strategic plan is financial sustainability. This means that Milton will work to manage its finances to continue to provide services to meet the current needs of the town without negatively impacting future generations' abilities to meet their own needs.
So, what's next?
Through the 2018 operating and capital budget, staff completed an operating budget forecast for 2019 and 2020.
Based on assumptions, staff are projecting a significant tax levy pressure to the town portion of the tax bill in 2019 and 2020. The major drivers of the forecast included:
- Opening new facilities in 2019 including Sherwood Community Centre and Library along with Fire Station No. 5.
- Increasing services to new growth areas including the Boyne Secondary Area.
- Funding to gradually reduce the infrastructure deficit.
- Inflationary impacts to maintain existing levels of service.
- The reversal of one-time transfers from the 2018 capital budget to the operating budget (CORS-001-18).
Staff will continue to revise this forecast throughout the budget process.
Photos in this article are courtesy of the town of Milton.
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