City council has approved the purchase of a Citizen Budget tool which will give residents access to the City’s budgeting process and the ability to provide feedback. Monica Lamb-Yorski photo

City council has approved the purchase of a Citizen Budget tool which will give residents access to the City’s budgeting process and the ability to provide feedback. Monica Lamb-Yorski photo

Williams Lake opts for online citizen budget program

Residents of Williams Lake will have the ability to comment on the city’s budget process through a web-based program

Williams Lake residents will soon be able to give input on the City’s budget through a web-based program.

At Tuesday’s regular meeting, city council authorized the purchase of a Citizen Budget interactive tool that gives users access to budget information and the opportunity to provide feedback.

The program is available on a wide range of smartphones and mobile devices.

Coun. Craig Smith credited realtor Michael Jones for bringing the idea forward and said there are about 20 communities in B.C. using the program such as Prince George, Smithers, Kamloops and Vernon.

“We took it from there and we discussed it at committee of the whole,” Smith said.

Jones recently moved back to Williams Lake from Korea and told the Tribune he was happy to learn council had agreed to purchasing the program and thanked Smith and Coun. Scott Nelson for their willingness to consider an idea coming from outside the inner political circle.

“This is a sign of wise leadership,” Jones said, noting the adoption of the technology will affect a citizen’s ability to provide actual hands-on input on the budgeting process. “I think the interactive tool will help people make sense of a rather complex process, all the while enabling a person to understand how it impacts them specifically.”

Embracing new technology is the other positive thing, Jones suggested.

“This is true for all areas of our lives here,” he said. “Perhaps one day Williams Lake can begin to slowly establish itself as an alternative location for innovation and technology companies. Progress starts with small steps and the budgeting tool is a good step in the right direction.”

Read More about Jones: International couple make Cariboo home

Council unanimously approved increasing the finance operating budget by $2,750 annually to cover the costs of the new program.

In a report to city council, chief financial officer Vitali Kozubenko included an example from the City of Prince George’s use of Citizen Budget that included a very clear pie chart outlining where tax dollars go.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

International Women’s Day is March 8. (
International Women’s Day 2021: #choosetochallenge

International Women’s Day is marked annually on March 8

Celebrate women in leadership, March 8, International Women’s Day 2021 (Unsplash)
EDITORIAL: International Women’s Day 2021 shines spotlight on achievements, ongoing inequities

COVID-19 increased gender-based violence, economic stress, the burden of care giving for women

Amarjit Khakh of Williams Lake. (Photo submitted)

Kindness and giving, key to full life

Sierra William (left) with her grandmother Eileen William. (Roger William photo)

Xeni Gwet’in woman finds strength in tradition

Cynthia English (Photo submitted)
INTERNATIONL WOMEN’S DAY 2021: Cynthia English

Cynthia English, 30, has been working in the logging industry for several years

Elvira D’Angelo, 92, waits to receive her COVID-19 vaccination shot at a clinic in Montreal, Sunday, March 7, 2021, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues in Canada and around the world. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
‘It’s been a good week’: Tam hopeful on vaccines as pandemic anniversary nears

Tam says the addition of two new vaccines will help Canadians get immunized faster

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Const. Allan Young. Photo: Abbotsford Police Department
Manslaughter charge laid in Nelson death of Abbotsford police officer

Allan Young died after an incident in downtown Nelson last summer

(The Canadian Press)
‘Worse than Sept. 11, SARS and financial crisis combined’: Tourism industry in crisis

Travel services saw the biggest drop in active businesses with 31 per cent fewer firms operating

Pictures and notes in from friends and classmates make up a memorial in support and memory of Aubrey Berry, 4, and her sister Chloe, 6, during a vigil held at Willows Beach in Oak Bay, B.C., on December 30, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Mother of slain daughters supports recent changes to Canada’s Divorce Act

Sarah Cotton-Elliott said she believed her children took a back seat to arranging equal parenting

Victoria man Brett Andersen is asking for people’s help to secure him one of eight free tickets to the moon. (Screenshot/@brettandersen Instagram)
Victoria man wants your help securing a free ticket to the moon

Japanese billionaire offering eight people a trip to the moon

The Conservation Officers Service is warning aquarium users after invasive and potentially destructive mussels were found in moss balls from a pet store. (BC Conservation Officers Service/Facebook)
Aquarium users in B.C. warned after invasive mussels found at pet store

Conservation officers were told the mussels were found in a moss ball from a Terrace pet store.

Hockey hall-of-fame legend Wayne Gretzky, right, watches the casket of his father, Walter Gretzky, as it is carried from the church during a funeral service in Brantford, Ont., Saturday, March 6, 2021. HE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Walter Gretzky remembered as a man with a ‘heart of gold’ at funeral

The famous hockey father died Thursday at age 82 after battling Parkinson’s disease

Most Read