Budget 2020: The next steps Print Article Font Size
Over the past few months, Council and Town staff have been putting together the 2020 Budget and five-year Financial Plan. The proposed Budget and Financial Plan focuses on increasing reserves to provide funding for renewal of Town assets and maintaining levels of services for residents.
 
An important part of the budget process is making sure residents understand any changes might impact them.
 
As part of this process, Council and Town Staff hosted the annual Budget Open House on January 21 to engage the public in conversation about the proposed Budget and Financial Plan.
 
“We appreciate those that took advantage of the opportunity to come out and get informed about what is being proposed,” said Mayor Ron Oszust. “The public consultation period closes on February 7, so there’s still an opportunity for the public to provide feedback.”
 
Residents are encouraged to view the Budget Book at golden.ca/budget and provide feedback through the following opportunities:
  • Come to the next Council Meeting on February 4 at 7 p.m. There is space on the meeting agenda for a conversation with Council about the proposed budget.
  • Email: clerk@golden.ca title email as “2020 budget.”
  • Mail: Corporate Officer, Box 350, Golden, B.C, V0A 1H0.
 
“Every time you use a recreation facility, drive a local street, have your garbage picked up, or flush your toilet – you are using a Town of Golden service,” said CAO Jon Wilsgard. “Public input helps Council to shape how the Town’s priorities are funded for the near future.”
 
The current process will see Council pass separate readings of the Financial Plan bylaw and eventually adopt it. Following adoption, comes setting the tax rates for the various tax classes in the community, this determines who pays how much in order to fund the budget.
 
Tax rates are based on property assessment values that are provided by BC Assessment (a provincial Crown Corporation) every year. BC Assessment determines the value of properties, and Council determines the property tax rate based on the revenues needed to pay for public services.
 
Golden has six different classes of properties, residential, utility, major industry, light industry, business, and non-profit. The majority of the municipal taxes (about 87 per cent) are provided by residential and business properties in Golden.
 
“Setting the rate for each class is an exercise in structured and practical political judgement, considering assessment trends, distribution fairness, new (non- market) assessment benefits and economic development potential,” said Mayor Oszust. “This is the most important annual decision that council makes – and can be highly scrutinized by the public. Moving forward, Council will debate and discuss its views on these considerations and we will speak more to them after the budget is adopted.”
 
To learn more about the proposed 2020 Budget and 2020-2024 Financial Plan, visit golden.ca/budget or get a copy of the 2020 Budget Book at Town Hall.