Augusta Township passes budget with 7 per cent tax rate increase

The below was submitted by Augusta Township.

Augusta Township Council passed the 2024 Municipal Budget at its February 26 meeting, approving a tax rate increase of 7 per cent.

An average Augusta home with an assessed value of $192,000 will see an increase of $89.21 on the Township’s portion of their annual tax bill. The tax levy increase over last year amounts to 9.26 per cent or an increase of $529,047.

“Municipalities are facing more pressure to continue services while the costs for infrastructure and operating costs continue to increase due to market conditions and interest rates,” says Mayor Jeff Shaver. “The need for adhering to the asset management plan, while investing in the future has a cost to our residents, in addition to the continued decline in provincial and federal funding, which adds more pressure to council and staff to bring forward a fiscally responsible budget.”

“The 7 per cent tax increase to Augusta’s residents in the final 2024 budget compares to others within the surrounding region,” says Shaver.

“Municipalities across the province are being challenged more than ever by rising costs associated with updating aging infrastructure, insurance, labour, and decreases in funding by all levels of government,” explains CAO Shannon Geraghty. “The need for consistent funding and resuming the phase-in assessments are critical in providing more revenues to the budget, while reducing the impact to our residents and businesses.

“We are currently updating our fees and charges by-law, as well as development charges which are specific to growth and services which will provide additional sources of revenue to provide stability in future budgets.”

The Township’s overall budget for 2024 is $9.9 million, with $2.9 million allocated to capital projects. By comparison, the overall budget in 2023 was $9.1 million, with $2.5 million allocated to capital projects.

Highlights of the 2024 capital budget include:

  • Merwin Lane Rehabilitation (McIntosh Road to County Road 26)
  • New Tanker for the Fire Department (Station No. 1)
  • New Public Works Wheel Loader
  • Recreation Facility Upgrades to North Augusta & Maitland
  • Contribution to Asset Management Plan

Total revenues include $6,125,503 through taxation General Levy, $1,430,078 in various grants, and transfers to/from reserves from the Township totalling $1,674,557.

“Service excellence to the public, continuous improvement from an operational perspective, and responsible capital investment in infrastructure remained important considerations during the budget process,” says Shaver.

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