After 3 day-long meetings and 1 special committee of the whole meeting on Tuesday Jan 17th, Perth council is now facing the final vote to set the 2023 tax rate and municipal operating budget. These sessions don’t include the many individual meetings held between councilors and the town treasurer, Director Brian Burns over the last several weeks. The plan is to hold a final vote at the full council meeting on Jan 31st.
The budget calls for an effective property tax rate increase of 5% and an 11% jump in the combined water/sewer bill. For the average home assessment of $248K this would mean an extra $190 this year. Municipal taxes are based on property values set by the Municipal Property Assessment Corporation (MPAC) in January of 2016. The revenues combine for a total of $8.9M. Several councilors argued for a lower increase referring to financial pressures on households facing near record setting inflation rates over the last year. But Director Burns warned of the cumulative negative effect on critical reserves that even a 1% cut would bring. In the end, the committee supported the increase and forwarded the motion to council for a final vote.