Tuesday, Mar. 8, 2016 (Halifax, NS) – Regional Council today unanimously approved the 2016-17 operating and project budgets for the Halifax Regional Municipality. The $873 million gross operating and $198 million gross project budgets were structured to enable strategic investments and municipal service enhancements with no increase to the average residential and commercial tax bills for this year.
The general rates of taxation on residential property (per $100 of assessed value) will be set at:
- $0.662 for the urban area
- $0.629 for the suburban area
- $0.629 for the rural area
The general rates of taxation on commercial property (per $100 of assessed value) will be set at:
- $2.832 for the urban area
- $2.832 for the suburban area
- $2.510 for the rural area
Tax rates associated with Transit (per $100 of assessed value) will be set at:
- $0.049 for the Regional Transportation tax rate
- $0.102 for the Local Transit tax rate
“On behalf of Council, I’m pleased that this budget positions us to continue to provide high quality programs and services while taking innovative approaches that improve the lives of citizens and attract new citizens,” said Mayor Savage. “We are doing it while we balance our books and hold the line on tax.”
The combination of sound financial policies and cost savings found through service efficiencies will enable the following enhancements to municipal programs, services and infrastructure this year, including:
- construction of the Dartmouth four-pad arena complex;
- investment in rural fire and emergency services;
- increased resources and modernization of Planning and Development services to support anticipated growth and reduce red tape;
- initial implementation of system network changes designed to make transit better, through the Moving Forward Together Plan; and
- continued implementation of a five-year, $43 million investment in transit technology upgrades, specifically the roll out of the new GPS-based Automatic Vehicle Location (AVL) system and associated passenger communication improvements.
“We continue to find creative ways to deliver our programs and services as efficiently as possible while navigating shifts in demographics and the housing market,” said Acting Chief Administrative Officer, John Traves. “Strong financial planning - as well as policies that reduce our debt and sufficiently fund ongoing program and service requirements - will enable us to respond to changing conditions and achieve long-term prosperity.”
For more detailed information on the 2016-17 operating and project budgets visit www.halifax.ca/budget.