The Regional District of East Kootenay (RDEK) is seeking feedback on its draft 2022-26 five-year financial plan before it is adopted at the March 11 board meeting.
RDEK Board Chair Rob Gay is asking residents to visit the project page and learn about the draft plan before the public comment period ends.
“The budgeting process begins in September with RDEK staff, and there have been meetings with directors, stakeholders, commissions and many others that have helped inform this draft plan,” Gay said. in a press release. “While these meetings will continue in the coming weeks, we also want to hear from the public and hear the community’s opinion on our projects and services and the potential impact on property taxes.”
The plan explains how taxpayers’ money is spent on more than 100 services in the regional district.
The budget includes items such as capital projects, solid waste treatment and transfer stations, human resources and construction.
The proposed 2022 operating budget proposes a 4.6% increase over last year, according to RDEK, which equates to about $14 on average for residential appraisals of $462,000.
“It is important to remember that in the RDEK model, municipalities and electoral areas are affected differently depending on the RDEK services they receive,” the regional district explained.
The 2022 operating budget is $38.2 million and the capital budget is just over $8.8 million.
The RDEK summarized spending in the draft plan, with 20% going to protective and emergency services, 7% to utilities, 8% to development and transit, and 13% to administration. Seven percent is allocated to recreation and culture, 18 percent to solid waste, eight percent to recycling, 13 percent to municipal debt payment and 6 percent to other services.
Overall, in 2022, it is proposed to increase total taxes collected by 6.7%. RDEK says the 1.7% increase in the new assessment will reduce the overall impact of shared services to a proposed increase of 4.6%.
Property taxes for 2022 have increased to a total of $21,241,918. The 2021 property taxes were $19,837,121.
Some of the biggest capital projects in the coming year include:
• Fairmont Flood and Debris Flow Mitigation – Cold Spring Creek Improvements
• South Country Aquifer and Elko Sinkoles Project (depending on grant)
• Windermere Water – Distribution System Upgrade
• Hosmer Fire – Construction of a new fire station (Area A portion of the Elk Valley Tax Sharing Grant)
• Organic composting facilities (Elk Valley, Central and Columbia Valley sub-regions)
• Edgewater Connectivity Project – Phase 1
“Year after year, this council and our staff work diligently to find a balance between providing quality services to our residents and considering tax impacts. As service level expectations increase and the region continues to grow and evolve, this task becomes all the more difficult and I am proud of the balance we have achieved in the draft service plan. this year,” Gay said. “Having public feedback is an important next step in the process and we look forward to gathering their feedback over the coming weeks. »
The public comment period is open until noon on Monday, March 7, 2022. Copies of the plan and comment forms are available online at engage.rdek.bc.ca/budget or in person, upon request, via Cranbrook and Columbia Valley. RDEK offices.
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