Council will come back from their break and dig into what will be tough budget discussions - the number on the table now is 5.47% increase

By Staff

July 21, 2021

BURLINGTON, ON

 

Budget time – and this is going to be a defining period of time for this council.

Traditionally politicians put forward a budget that lowers taxes in an election year.

That is going to be very very difficult for this Mayor; she has yet to learn budget discipline.

Will the Mayor learn to listen to and hear what some of her council members and the public are saying. The Finance department will do their best to make a case for some fiscal prudence.

Her council will learn to clamp down – when staff finishes telling them what the city is really up against fiscal prudence will kick in.

Insurance costs have sky-rocketed. Repairing the covid19 damage to the local economy is going to take time.

Burlington is fortunate in having a Finance department that knows what they are facing – and while council lauds their efforts they don’t pay enough attention to the advice that Treasurer Joan Ford puts forward.

The city will be doing another survey – that’s all part of the process. The complexity of municipal budgets is difficult for people to get a grip on. There isn’t a balance sheet or a profit and loss statement – municipalities are not in place to make money – they are there to deliver services and hold funds for those unforeseen situations.

Take the budget survey and tell the finance people s which City services are important to you.

You are encouraged to complete an online survey at www.getinvolvedburlington.ca. All the feedback captured through the survey will be shared with Burlington City Council. The survey will remain open until Sept. 30, 2021.

Key meeting dates for the 2022 budget include:

Sept 22, 23, 28, and 30
City Council workshops with presentations from each City service area

There used to be public budget meetings that filled the main room at the Art Gallery

Nov. 3
Corporate Services, Strategy, Risk and Accountability Committee Meeting: 2022 Budget overview report

Nov. 4
2022 Budget Virtual Town Hall

Nov. 30 and Dec. 2
Corporate Services, Strategy, Risk and Accountability Committee Meeting: 2022 Budget review and approval

Dec. 14
Meeting of Burlington City Council: City Council to consider approval of the proposed 2022 budget

Changes in how Council meetings will take place as the Region works its way through Step 3 of the Re-Open Plan.  It might be possible to hold real public meetings with perhaps limited public participation.

Does this Council really want the public in the room looking them in the eye and asking some hard questions?

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