BY VOICE STAFF
At its last regular meeting, Pelham Town Council approved the 2019 operating, capital, and water and wastewater budgets, resulting in a 7.12 per cent tax increase after 2.01 per cent of new growth.
According to a Town statement, what this means to an average household assessed at $250,000 is an annual increase of $84.91 or $7.08/month. For a $350,000 assessment the annual 2019 rate increase is $118.76 or $9.90/month. For a $450,000 assessment the annual increase is $152.77 or $12.73/month.
“Council took a long, hard look at the numbers for 2019, and along with staff, made some tough decisions,” said Mayor Marvin Junkin. “I commend council and staff for their work on this budget, and look forward to completing critical repairs to roads such as Poth Street and Sulphur Springs Drive.”
Overall, the 2019 operating budget is $17,238,707, and the capital budget is $6,198,727. The following is a snapshot of some of this approved projects and services in this year’s budget.
- New grant received for the second transit bus which will be operational starting in September 2019
- Additional staffing for Climate Change Coordinator which is funded 80% by a grant and a part time tradesperson
- Contracted services for the community centre, transit, gypsy moths, snow removal, fire radio software, strategic plan and integrity commissioner
- There have been organizational changes and increases for merit, equity and benefits
- Debt payments on new debenture and interest for $4,018,355 which is for projects that have been completed and approved to be funded by debt
- Debt payments on new debenture for $1,700,000 to be paid by the pledge revenue from the donations at the community centre. This will not impact the tax levy, according to the Town’s statement.
- Communit centre expenses are projected to be higher than forecast before construction was completed by $529,623, of which $481,077 are utilities. “A one-time transfer of $425,500 from the community centre reserve has been used to mitigate this large increase,” said the statement.
- New radios for the fire department $305,000
- New roofs on Fire Station # 1 and partial roof Town Hall $45,000 & $47,000
- Foundation waterproofing at Town Hall $55,000
- Culvert replacement at Poth Street $400,000
- Sulphur Springs Drive repair $250,000
- Well replacement at Tice Road facility $30,000
- Pelham Street Storm and road reconstruction waiting for Council’s approval, since grant funding has been received. This project is valued at $2,436,055 plus watermain replacement at $250,000 for a total of $2,686,055
- Road rehabilitation various projects $400,000
- Wastewater capital projects $302,500
- Haist Street watermain replacement $519,750
- Brushing the Swayze Drain $30,000
Water Wastewater Budgets
- A Water Wastewater Rate Study was completed in 2018 by BMA Management Consulting Inc. The last rate study was conducted in 2006. The rate increase for water is 7.5% and for wastewater is 9.5%. This is equivalent to $134.45 increase per average household for the most common consumption of 33m3 per year or $11.20 per month.