THUNDER BAY – POLITICS – The city of Thunder Bay will set the budget for 2022.
The municipal budget draft 2022 forms the starting point for the detailed review by the city council. This year’s budget includes an increase in the local tax levy after growing by $ 4.7 million, or 2.29%. The effects of COVID-19 are exempt from the levy and are to be financed from the stabilization reserve fund.
âThis budget identifies the impact of executing program and service review initiatives, including the digital strategy and recruiting strategy, along with service level changes in Licensing & Enforcement, Superior North EMS and Long Term Care . Additional staff positions are included, most of which are provincial funded, âsaid Norm Gale, City Manager. “I thank the city council leaders and finance team for their great job navigating and reporting on the ongoing effects of COVID-19.”
“On instruction from the council, an increase of $ 1 million in the tax-deferred capital budget is proposed to focus on addressing the infrastructure funding gap,” said Linda Evans, general manager – Corporate Services & Long-Term Care and City Treasurer. “Additional funding from the Ontario Municipal Partnership Fund (OMPF) and savings from implementing the Thunder Bay Fire Rescue Master Plan helped offset inflationary and other external cost increases.”
2022 key budget factors
The tax increases include:
- Increases for police services | $ 1.6 million
- Capital financed from the tax levy | $ 1.0 million
- Enhancements including Licensing & Enforcement, Parks (Pool 6) and Superior North EMS | $ 1.0 million
- Implementation of program and service review, including staff recruitment, digital strategy and community recycling program | $ 0.5 million
- Insurance premiums | $ 0.5 million
- Outer boards | $ 0.3 million
- Police Department | $ 0.2 million
The tax breaks include:
- Tax write-offs, insurance claims and legal fee reduction based on current trend analysis | $ 1.3 million
- Increased allocation from the Ontario Municipal Partnership Fund | $ 0.8 million
- Reduced personnel costs for Thunder Bay Fire Rescue according to the Thunder Bay Fire Rescue Masterplan | $ 0.6 million
- Debentures | $ 0.4 million
- Increase in the usage fee | $ 0.3 million
The proposed capital for 2022, funded from the tax budget of $ 17.4 million, represents an increase of $ 1 million from the 2021 level, increasing investment in infrastructure renewal. The estimated impact of COVID-19 in 2022 is $ 7 million.
View the proposed 2022 municipal budget online at www.thunderbay.ca/budget.
The population is invited to participate and provide feedback on the proposed budget to the city council. An online survey is available from January 4th to February 3rd at www.thunderbay.ca/GetInvolved. Feedback can also be provided in hard copy via the Budget Community Handbook, available on the City website, from the Waverley and Brodie branches of the Thunder Bay Public Library, or from City Hall.
During the budget process, there are two opportunities for the public to make a deputation to the City Council on January 13th and February 3rd. Both sessions start at 6.30 p.m. and are held virtually via MS Teams. There are four ways of making a deputation: by video conference, by telephone, via the kiosk in the lobby of the town hall or by letter to the council. All deputations must be planned in advance; walk-in deputations are not permitted. Substitute requests can be made by email to [email protected] or by filling out the online âSpeak Before Councilâ form.
– For deputations from January 13th applications must be submitted no later than 10.01. arrive at noon.
– For deputations from February 3, applications must be received by January 28 at 4:30 p.m. at the latest.
For more information on representation, please contact the city clerk’s office at 625-2230 or visit the city’s website.
The Council’s budget reviews will take place on February 18, 20, 26 and 1 from 5:00 p.m. Approval is expected on February 7th. More information is available at www.thunderbay.ca/budget.