Council whittles the tax increase down a bit - Performing Arts Centre gets what it wanted - Seniors lost out on transit.

Newsflash 100By Pepper Parr

January 21st, 2016


What started out as a 3.85% increase in the tax rate for 2016 got whittled down to 3.15% at the end of a five hour budget meeting held at city hall on Wednesday.

The Performing Arts Centre got what they wanted, the seniors didn’t succeed in convincing the Councillors that free transit Monday’s was a good idea.

For the first time the public got some sense as to where the city manager ants to take the city of the future.

The disposition of the 2015 surplus was hotly debated – but for the most part those dollars are getting tucked into different reserve funds.

The way city hall is staffed is going to get a hard look and the city manager is going to issue mandate letters to his Directors.

The number of bylaw officers is going to change.

Plans for a program to collect data on the state of commerce in the down ton core got the chop- The Burlington Downtown Business Association (BDBA) was told they could pay for that task themselves.

And Councillor Jack Dennison actually went along with spending some money.

Councillor Sharman continued to hammer away for more data.

The Gazette will report in detail on each of these.

Council met as a Standing Committee – the decisions they made get approved at Council on Monday where they can be changed.

Burlington City Council Group

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10 comments to Council whittles the tax increase down a bit – Performing Arts Centre gets what it wanted – Seniors lost out on transit.

  • henri de beaujolais

    So the 2015 Canadian inflation rate was 1.08% (source:

    City Hall’s increase of 3.15% is roughly THREE TIMES the Canadian inflation rate.

    How is that justifiable? And when there was surplus from last year as well. Is there money to aid in replacing the infrastructure that failed in the recent flood? Is there money for mass-transit? Is there money to implement a strategic plan? Wait, forget I said that…

    Fascinating decisions. Simply fascinating…

    I think we need more numbers to see where these numbers are going to take us to.. (to paraphrase a number conscious Councillor)

    • Tom Muir

      We need an explanation of what price index the city used in its inflation assumptions.

      I think henri is talking about the CPI.

      The alternative so-called “core CPI” excludes 8 volatile items, and that was about 2%.

      But most of these items, except fruits, vegetables, tobacco, are relevant to city spending. These include, gasoline, fuel oil, natural gas, mortgage interest, inter-city transportation.

      So while the city budget, and all the discussion at Council, is based on an assumption of 2%, we are left wondering where the city got the data, and what is it based on.

      I’m away from home for now, so can someone ask Councilor Sharman for this data, since he is the data man, and has spoke to this issue of spending over inflation?

  • Karen Dumfey


    What a concept…to do what constituents want! This council will never do that!!!

  • Maggie

    If they want my bylaw enforcers tell the enforcers to come to King rd. During the summer landscape trucks park on the road where there is no parking. They take up both the pedestrian and bike lines forcing pedestrians and cyclists onto the road. They do this even though the house they are working at has a large empty driveway. Another issue is snow or leaves in these laneways.

  • Karen Dumfey

    Dear Editor, I would be interested to know the readership here. I am shocked at how little response to this!! Either Burlingtonians have thrown in the towel or they just don’t care about their tax bill and all the money grabbing issues this council offers.

  • Yvonne

    Great job once again feeding the BPAC that has no money to attract big name acts while shoving Seniors aside ,

  • neil

    …not surprised at what is really on the top of the wish list.. although they want another by law enforcement officer, (WHY?) I haven’t heard or seen any article, meeting, survey for another one…but the question is what about additional parking enforcement officers? this matter has been a very hot topic for over a year… but a staff report for on street parking passes is the solution to parking issues on the street… hmmmmm….. and of course mr. councillor data, oh he’s the same one that reopened the parking issue and forced the latest report… lets spend more money on consultants or data, but what staff are not seeing is that the real consultants are the people who ride and use transit and the professional operators who drive the 40′ vehicles….! Look at the Council choir, once again a few on key, while others are not even trying… end.

    • Yvonne

      They need more officers to chase coyotes and people feeding the birds . I agree on the number of reports Council requires ,. Make a decision based on what your constituents want and not what the survey says,thats why they were elected in the first place

  • penny Hersh

    Seniors Vote…..It would be wise for councillors to remember this. Money for the Performing Art Centre that many residents cannot afford to go to, but none for seniors who have to take the bus.

  • Karen Dumfey

    Ahhhh isn’t that generous!!! Pathetic!!