Dauphin's municipal mill rate is down for 2016 compared to last year, but the city is raising more money through municipal taxes.
The City of Dauphin's mill rate will be 19.604 this year. It was 21.270 in 2015. The mill rate will raise $5,969,756 in 2016 compared to $5,947,799 last year.
The city's assessment increased an average of 8.1 per cent, which is lower than the average in the rest of the region. CAO Brad Collett says the vast majority of residents and businesses should see a small overall tax decrease because Dauphin’s share of school tax for Mountain View School Division is less than last year.
Collett went through the budget at a public meeting at city hall last evening. Like last year, the city is increasing capital and cultural spending.
In addition to reconstructing Veteran's Drive and making a multi-use path down Jackson Street, Mayor Eric Irwin listed off some quality of life projects, including a new waterslide at the pool, a bridge in Vermillion Park, a CN warming shelter, cleaning up CN park, painting lampposts downtown, benches and bike racks, and a couple more bronze statues for the city.
On the utility side, Main Street south is getting a sewer system from Riverside Road to Triangle, engineering will be started on an upgraded lagoon, some water mains will be replaced, and geothermal will be installed at the water treatment plant.
Only city council, staff, and media were in attendance for the budget meeting, which Collett says has been the case for several years.
Mayor Irwin will be discussing the budget today at the State of the City address.
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MVSD Projecting Surplus
Mountain View School Division says its finances are looking a little better than originally thought.
Right now, the division is looking to finish the school year with a surplus of about $235,000.
Secretary-Treasurer Bart Michaleski says the extra money will help offset next year's projected deficit.
"We'll be able to draw on those surplus dollars or on those reserve dollars to offset any kind of a deficit if that were to occur next year, so it will help in next year's budget and hopefully we won't be looking at a deficit for next year."
When next year's budget was announced a couple of months ago, the division was looking to be short about $1.1-million.
Most of City Saved, but Residents Can't Return to Fort McMurray for Weeks Says Alberta Premier
Alberta Premier Rachel Notley says the hard work of firefighters has saved about 90 per cent of the buildings in the city.
Notley toured the area yesterday. She says 2,400 buildings burned but 25,000 are still intact, including the hospital, municipal buildings and schools.
Much of the downtown is okay and the water treatment plant is still there.
But Notley says it's not safe for people to return yet because there are still hot spots and large sections of the city don't have power, gas or water. She says a plan is to be developed over the next two weeks for the orderly and safe return of residents.
Wildfires Force More Evacuations in Eastern Manitoba
Hundreds of cottagers have been evacuated as two fires burning on the Manitoba-Ontario boundary continue to challenge crews.
Yesterday, 61 cottages and a lodge were evacuated at Wallace Lake because of the fire near the Beresford subdivision at Nopiming Provincial Park.
That fire is about 500 square kilometres, most of it in Ontario.
Further south, a 28-square-kilometre fire prompted an evacuation of the east shore of Caddy Lake.