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City of Moncton tax rate maintained in 2015


December 15, 2014

City of Moncton tax rate maintained in 2015
Moncton has not raised tax rate in last seven years
 
MONCTON – Moncton City Council resolved to formally adopt its 2015 Budget at its December 15, 2014 public Council meeting. Residents’ tax rate will remain the same in 2015 ¬at $1.6393 per hundred dollars of assessed value, despite an unexpectedly large provincial cut of $3.2 million. Although the tax rate remains the same, the increase in assessment of 2.03 per cent on existing homes will mean an increase of $33 from 2014 based on a typical home valued at $157,000. The City continues to grow with an increase in assessment of 2.30 per cent as a result of new construction and development, for a total provincial assessment increase of 4.33 per cent.
 
“This was yet another challenging budget deliberation,” said Moncton Mayor George LeBlanc. “In addition to being faced with managing a deficit, caused in part by a difficult 2013-2014 winter that incurred higher than normal costs, we received word during deliberations that our equalization grant was being significantly cut once again. We must now deal with a larger shortfall than expected at a time when  municipalities need predictable and stable funding," added Mayor LeBlanc. "I do commend the efforts of all involved in finding solutions, which allowed us to adopt a responsible budget for 2015 that still allows us to achieve key goals and carry out important projects, all the while keeping our City in good financial shape,” he concluded.

“It isn’t an ideal scenario to have to dip into the reserves to offset unexpected shortfalls,” added City Manager Jacques Dubé. “We were told by the previous government that we would loose $2.7 million over 3 years, but the reality is that we lost $6 million, a figure that was completely off the mark in terms of the previous government's expectations and estimates regarding the new equalization formula.” 

Highlights of the 2015 Operating Budget, set at $144,018,330, include:
  • Continuing to do more Capital work out of the Operating Budget (doing more on a ‘pay as you go’ basis rather than borrowing) with a total of $6.2M for Capital out of Operating for the 2015 budget year.
  • Downtown Centre – Deposit an additional $1.6 million received from the federal rebate for RCMP policing into a reserve for the proposed Downtown Centre.
  • Unconditional grant – City will lose an additional $3.2 million of unconditional grant funding from the province in 2015 after the Government of New Brunswick restructured its property tax system in 2013.
  • Investment in Codiac Transit with marketing monies and continuation of reserve established in 2014 budget for future purchase of replacement buses.
  • Magnetic Hill Zoo – Increased funding for operation of the Zoo during November and December of each year with a “Wild Lights” program.
  • Withdrawal of over $1,500,000 from the General Fund Operating Reserve to cover budget shortfall as a result of net impact of reduced unconditional grant funding in excess of increase tax assessment base.
 
Highlights of the City’s $33.9 million 2015 Capital Budget include:
  • A $6.2 million contribution from the City’s Operating Budget that will help to reduce the City’s debt financing requirements.  These contributions to the Capital Budget from the Operating Budget have been a strategic priority for the last several years and are helping to reduce the City’s overall borrowing requirements and our debt.
  • Almost $8 million for water and sewer infrastructure improvements and renewal.
  • Over $16.6 million on road and sidewalk construction and improvement projects.
  • $4.2 million in recreation and culture expenditures including enhancements to parks, trails, recreation master plan projects, Salisbury Road Nature Park, and Magnetic Hill Zoo. 
  • $1 million for redevelopment of the East End Pool.
  • Continued development of the Downtown and Riverfront with $400,000 committed towards the enhancement of these areas.
  • $2.9 million allocated towards the replacement of Codiac Transpo’s annual fleet replacement with additional funds committed over the next 4 years.
  • An additional $650,000 in 2015 for a new fire station on Elmwood Drive to replace the McLaughlin Fire Station.  
 
Highlights of the $35.6 million Water and Sewer Utility budget include:

  • The quarterly water and sewer utility bill for a typical household in Moncton (average household use of 272 cubic metres as defined by the Province of New Brunswick) will increase by $30 or $7.50 on a quarterly bill. These figures are based on an annual bill of $945 or quarterly bill of $236.25 compared to a typical household’s 2014 annual utility bill of $915 or quarterly bill of $228.75.
  • This total also includes a $5 rate increase on the Greater Moncton Waste Water Commission (GMWWC) rate. This increase is as a result of improvements and upgrades at the Greater Moncton Sewerage Commission as well as infrastructure improvements to Moncton’s water distribution system.
 
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Media contact:
 
Isabelle LeBlanc
Director, Corporate Communications
City of Moncton
506.853.3592 / isabelle.leblanc@moncton.ca