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Fort Macleod town council hikes property taxes 2.98%

Fort Macleod council approved an $8.885-million budget Monday night that calls for a 2.983 per cent tax hike.
Council also approved its $13.9-million capital budget on Monday, and gave three readings to By-law 1827 to set the taxation rates.
Mayor Rene Gendre asked council to postpone approval so more public consultation can be done.
“My concern is the public hasn’t been adequately advised,” Gendre said.
Gendre asked council to postpone approval until the budgets were published in The Macleod Gazette and a public hearing was held.
“I’m not saying don’t approve it,” Gendre stressed.
Chief administrative officer David Connauton noted that council approved an interim budget that was presented at an open house in January.
At that same public meeting, information on some of the projects in the capital budget were presented.
Coun. Trish Hoskin noted there was little time to advertise and hold a public meeting and still get the budget to the province by June 1, as required by the Municipal Government Act.
“I’m comfortable to pass this tonight,” Hoskin said.
Gendre’s motion to table the budget was defeated by a vote of 6-1.
Coun. Michael Dyck’s motion to approve the budget passed by the same 6-1 vote, with Gendre opposed.
The Town of Fort Macleod will get $5.5-million in revenue from other sources in 2015.
That leaves $3,382,220 in taxes to be collected to complete the $8,885,656 2015 budget.
Owners of a house with an assessed value of $100,000 will pay an additional $13.30 in taxes.
Owners of a house with an assessed value of $250,000 will pay an additional $33.26 in taxes.
People who own commercial and industrial properties with an assessed value of $100,000 will pay an additional $24.49 in taxes.
The tax increase for commercial and industrial buildings with an assessed value of $250,000 will be $61.23.
The 2015 budget approved by council includes $1,611,147 for electrical production and distribution; $1,332,090 for administration; $981,107 for roads, streets, etc.; $795,138 for recreation and parks; $782,617 for water supply and distribution; $540,240 for sanitary sewage; $353,686 for garbage collection; $267,823 for culture, community hall and library; $223,490 for municipal enforcement; $213,142 for economic development; $189,114 for fire; $170,800 for council; $159,969 for FCSS; $156,200 for municipal planning; $42,316 for airport; $41,600 for cemeteries; $20,000 for subdivisions; and $5,850 for disaster services.
The Town of Fort Macleod is required to pay school requisitions of $891,952 and a seniors foundation requisition of $93,278 in 2015.
The capital budget includes $7-million for water and sewer lines and $6.44-million for street and road improvements and the public works shop.

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