The highlights of Gatineau's 2018 budget, the first of the new Municipal Council, are as follows.
We adopted a balanced and reasonable budget. We are pursuing the significant continuous infrastructure improvement and massive catch-up efforts undertaken in the past few years, focusing on strategic investments in a select few projects or partnerships to improve residents' quality of life, specifically: speed reduction in school zones, more water playgrounds and pool hours, better snow clearing, revitalization of our older urban cores and of the downtown, and financial support for the Dalton ecological park and the Old Aylmer public market.
We are facing complex budget issues that will raise many questions. You can go to the municipal Web site, through Budget : perspective citoyenne for details on your tax account, or feel free to contact your elected representatives if you have any questions or comments.
I would like to thank all of the elected officials for their participation and contributions throughout the budget process. I would also like to acknowledge the contributions made by all those in the municipal administration who contributed from near or far. Once again, the budget review exercise has been a testament to the rigour, prudence and transparency of the public administration.
It is thanks to such invaluable cooperation that we are now able to bring Gatineau residents a budget that addresses our communities' challenges.
On December 18, Gatineau Municipal Council adopted the 2018 budget, a $599.8 million balanced budget.
This year's tax increases fall under two categories:
* Corresponding to the Bank of Canada target consumer price index (CPI).
Debt servicing now only comes to 10.5% of spending. Close to 60% of our infrastructure investments are paid in cash, which helps ensure intergenerational equity for tomorrow's taxpayers.
The Commission's work since 2013 has helped generate $15.4 million in annual permanent savings, one year ahead of the 2018 deadline.
Effective January 1, 2018, duties on transfers of immovables will be higher for that part of the transaction that is in excess of $1,000,000, which will essentially not affect the residential sector. This measure will generate an additional $2 million annualy for Gatineau.
Gatineau is investing in improving services to the public.
Total investments for the next three years will be $387 million, including $127.3 million in 2018, as follows:
Gatineau will pursue its investment efforts in the following areas: