The city of Williams Lake is now looking at a 6.6 per cent tax increase overall in 2023, down from the 11.1 per cent proposed a week ago.
At the regular meeting Tuesday, April 18, council voted in favour of trimming $700,000 from the capital budget so the tax rate could be decreased and directed staff to redraft the 2023-2027 financial plan bylaw and the 2023 municipal tax rate bylaw.
Council then met for a special meeting Wednesday, April 19, and gave three readings to the two bylaws.
Mayor Surinderpal Rathor, councillors Angie Delainey, Joan Flaspohler, Jazmyn Lyons and Michael Moses voted in favour of both, while councillors Sheila Boehm and Scott Nelson voted against both.
Before the municipal tax rate bylaw vote, Rathor said the tax rate was decreased by four percent overall.
Breaking it down, Rathor said the increases for residential will be 11.8 per cent, for utility 2.6 per cent, major and small industry 2.1 per cent, business would be 3.8 per cent and recreation and non-profit will be 7.8 per cent.
“Thanks to all the council members for respecting each other and having a healthy debate,” he said of last night’s three-and-a-half our council meeting.
Rathor also said the money the city received for the hospital redevelopment building permit - $700,000 - has been calculated as income in the 2023 budget and directed toward the capital plan.
The special meeting lasted about 10 minutes with no further discussion.
Both the financial plan and the tax rate bylaw will now go to the Tuesday, May 2 regular council meeting for final adoption.
The $700,000 taken out of the budget was for reconstruction of a portion of Fourth Avenue North.