Budget nears $11M

The municipal budget for Summerland will require a two per cent increase for this year.

It will cost nearly $11 million to provide the municipality’s services in 2014.

The municipal budget, which will be presented to municipal council on Jan. 27, will require a two per cent tax increase for this year.

The final details of the budget have not yet been determined, but the revenues and expenses are similar to previous years.

Taxation is expected to bring $7.14 million into municipal coffers this year, an increase from the $6.95 million  in the 2013 budget.

The remainder of the municipality’s money will come from grants in lieu of taxes, provincial government grants, sales of services and rentals, licences, permits and fines and other sources.

The money received is used for the services provided by the municipality.

These include general government, protective services, works, environmental health services, environmental development services, public health and welfare, recreational and cultural services, debt servicing and transfers to reserve funds.

The fine details of these expenditures are not yet finalized.

Included in the budget are some discretionary spending items. These include replacing aging equipment, small public works projects and purchases for various municipal departments.

Some of the projects are infrastructure improvements which are too small for grant funding or projects which do not qualify for grants.

The discretionary spending is considered each year in January, before the budget is presented to council.

“We look at this every single year,” Mayor Janice Perrino said. “There are some things which have to be done.”

In addition to the general operating fund, the municipality has a water fund of around $4.37 million, a sewer fund of around $2.46 million and an electrical fund of just under $9.98 million.

The bulk of the revenue for these services comes from user rates and tax levies.