By a vote of 9-2 North Bay City Council has approved the 2019 operating budget.

This means the tax levy is 5.86 % higher than a year ago,

General Government Committee chair Councillor Tanya Vrebosch says the average homeowner with a $220,000 assessment will see their tax bill go up by $128.

She says there are several reasons starting with a new community centre and the re-development of Cassellholme.

“Last time, a community centre was built was in 1967. The last time a nursing home was built was in 1923. We’re being hit with this at the same time. In the last eight years, there’s been an under 2 % average for tax increases.. We’ve used all the tools and now it’s time to pay the piper,” Vrebosch says.

She says the next few years aren’t going to be pretty either.

“We’re going to have to tackle this through growth and there have been some promising signs,” she says.

She says the 5.86 % number is not final but is based on the current information.

City Councillor Dave Mendicino points out the increase isn’t just city expenses going up.

“That works out to 1.94. Capital is 2.31% and agencies, boards and commissions is at 1.61% and that’s how you get to 5.86,” he says.

Filed under: city-council, dave-mendicino, operating-budget, tanya-vrebosch