City council has selected some priorities for its upcoming budget deliberations.
During a public budget meeting held Thursday, Sept. 15, council committed to being open and transparent through the budget process, finance committee chair Coun. Scott Nelson said Monday.
“We are committed to finding a home as soon as possible for the 70 beds for seniors that Interior Health announced for Williams Lake last week,” Nelson said. “And if there is a tax increase we want it to go directly into roads.”
Members of the public interested in the budget (recommendations linked at bottom of story) are encouraged to read the latest 2017 Financial Plan report from the city’s chief financial officer, Mayor Walt Cobb said after Tuesday’s regular council meeting.
“It is a very extensive report,” Cobb said. “It gives us a whole bunch of parameters on where we are community-wise and gives us time to do something about what we are going to look like at the end of the day.”
In the report, chief financial officer William Wallace said he wanted to provide information for council to consider before preparing the city’s five-year financial plan, which is a requirement every year of all local governments.
“The financial plan is important because it details the financial resources that will be available for operations, capital projects and debt repayment; further, it details the sources of those financial resources including taxes, fees, grants and debt,” Wallace said. “The financial plan reflects council’s balancing of city and community needs in the short and long term against the burden of paying for those needs today.”
Coun. Ivan Bonnell described the report as a sound document and encouraged people to “sink their teeth into it.”
Council also endorsed a recommendation that during budget meetings, the chairs of various committees will present their department budgets with appropriate staff in attendance.