At Thursday’s Special Budget Meeting, Council unanimously approved the 2020 Budget which will result in a 1.6% increase to the Town of Gravenhurst share of the tax rate for 2020. This translates into a $7.25 increase per $100,000 of assessment on a residential dwelling.
$90 a month on an average home assessed at $236,000 pays for Town services such as fire prevention/protection, snow clearing, road repair, recreation services, library operations, by-law enforcement and community events. It also allows for rehabilitation, repair and replacement of Town assets which include roads, parks, sports fields, buildings, docks and vehicles.
“The Town of Gravenhurst accounts for only 37% of an urban property tax bill and 48% of a rural property tax bill,” said Val Sequeira, director of corporate services and chief financial officer. “After accounting for the District of Muskoka share of the tax bill and reductions to the education share of the tax bill, Gravenhurst residents will see a consolidated tax rate on their property tax bills that will be virtually unchanged from 2019.”
In late December 2019, Administration tabled the 2020 Budget for Council’s review and approval. Following a public consultation session held January 18; four days of presentations and deliberations took place from February 3-6 in Council Chambers.
“This Town continues to have one of the most transparent, consultative budget processes in Muskoka,” said Mayor Paul Kelly. “The discussion around the Council table reflected a high degree of engagement by Council. As usual, Administration provided good insight and sound professional advice that helped Council reach a consensus on the final tax rate increase.”
Looking ahead, Council has agreed to continue to hold an active seat at the table for future MRC negotiations and other significant economic drivers. As well, resources will be allocated to enhanced community engagement and stronger advocacy for improved community services. Administration will also be actively looking to develop a plan of action to participate in the provincial Municipal Modernization program designed to help improve efficiency and effectiveness of municipal services.
Full details of the approved 2020 Budget can be found at www.gravenhurst.ca/budget.