On December 9, Gatineau's Municipal Council adopted a balanced budget of close to $547 million for 2015.
Thus, for a median residential tax account, the increase is equivalent to 2.9%, or $70 (on a property assessed at $237,700). Of this 2.9%, 1.9% will be to increase the tax base, and is equivalent to the target Bank of Canada consumer price index (CPI), and 1% represents the dedicated infrastructure tax.
These investments are critical if we are to limit the deterioration of infrastructures and, ultimately, limit expenditures.
In 2015, Gatineau will continue to reassess its approaches in order to further improve its efficiency. It also intends to continue diversifying its revenue sources in order to reduce its dependence on property taxes.
Where is your money going?
The Commission de révision des dépenses et des services enabled Gatineau to achieve recurrent savings in the order of $6.3 million. In reassessing some of our practices, Gatineau was able to avoid an additional $3.4 million in costs.
However, this rigorous exercise was undermined by the transitional fiscal pact for 2015. As a result, some difficult choices had to be made in this budget.
The work on reducing Gatineau's budget growth will continue with the objective of achieving $15 million in recurrent savings by 2018.
Gatineau is the fourth largest city in the province of Quebec with close to 285,000 inhabitants.