City of Port Alberni residents will see a proposed extra $17 on their residential tax bill courtesy of the regional district.
“The tax impact of the Alberni-Clayoquot Regional District, based on a property of $175,000, would realize a net increase of $17 based on the budget as it is,” regional district CAO Russell Dyson told city council on Monday night.
The $17 includes a proposed requisition from the Alberni-Clayoquot Hospital Network (something that is paid every year).
The budget bylaw for the ACRD has yet to receive its first reading by the board of directors nor has it gone to a public session yet, Dyson added.
It will not be passed until the end of March.
It received first reading on Feb. 24 (after the News went to press).
The proposed tax requisition for the city was approximately $1.6 million in 2015, Dyson said. With that money, the city paid $215,000 for ACRD staff wages, $133,000 for the city’s multiplex debt, $112,000 goes to the Northern 911 Corporation and $92,000 goes to Custom Transit. Those amounts are set and will not change when the 2016 budget is adopted, Dyson said.
The regional district operates under several financial rules, Dyson said. “Areas are only charged for the services they are provided. Services are independent, you have to have a separate, distinct budget for each of our 47 services and you cannot transfer revenues and expenditures between the services without there being an equal reflected cost,” Dyson said. “For instance, if you wanted to borrow a fire apparatus from Sproat Lake for Beaver Creek, they would have to pay the market rate for it, they couldn’t just borrow it.”
The ACRD operates with 22 full-time staff, contractors and 12 committees.
For the rest of what $17 extra on city residents tax bills is proposed to pay for, $351,000 will go to general government, $12,361 will go to regional parks, $62,145 to regional planning, $77,171 to Alberni Valley emergency planning and $256,216 to the regional airport to reflect the lack of grants the ACRD has received for the airport’s expansion.