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Sidney approves 2022 Financial Plan

Sidney, B.C.; Council has approved a Financial Plan for 2022, resulting in a municipal tax impact of 3.76% for existing properties. The net impact of the tax increase on the average residential property is about $60 for the year, or $4.97 a month. The estimated tax increase for the average commercial property – valued at $1,027,400 – is about $202 for the year. Even with this increase, the municipal taxes paid by the average commercial property continue to be lower than in 2019, as a result of a 10% reduction provided in 2020.

Total municipal taxes for the average residence will be about $1,646 for this year or $137 per month. For this amount, the Town provides fire and police services, roads and sidewalk maintenance, parks and public space maintenance, infrastructure maintenance, community and emergency planning, bylaw enforcement, as well as a range of related community services.

As the community transitions out of the pandemic, the municipality is similarly transitioning back to normal revenue levels. The Canada-BC Safe Restart funding will soon be fully utilized. This funding allowed the Town to keep municipal tax increases artificially low over the past two years; in 2020, Council rolled back the tax increase to 0%, and instituted a modest 2.7% tax increase in 2021.

“Council has been fiscally responsible by keeping costs down as much as possible, while also ensuring we are not putting off a necessary tax increase for community members to shoulder down the road,” said Mayor McNeil-Smith. “We will continue to deliver the core services and amenities community members expect, while making new investments in community safety, climate change, and essential infrastructure.”

The 2022 budget will support faster emergency response times with a shift to 24/7 staffing of trained firefighters in the Community Safety Building and the addition of an officer to the Sidney/North Saanich RCMP Detachment. It also includes the first annual contribution of $50,000 to the Climate Action Reserve Fund, which will help the Town address priority projects identified in an updated Climate Action Plan.

The total 2022 operating budget for the Town is $25.5 million and the total capital program is $8.3 million. Most of the capital program is funded through the Town’s reserves. The program will involve nearly 100 capital projects that will maintain infrastructure and improve community services and amenities, including $2.5 million in infrastructure replacement projects, and $520,000 in active transportation investments through sidewalk and pathway improvements.

Ongoing support will continue to vital community organizations, including the Mary Winspear Centre, Shaw Centre for the Salish Sea, and the Sidney Museum and Archives. Total community support payments – an investment spread across ten non-profit organizations – exceed $1 million annually, representing approximately 8% of the Town’s operating budget.

Residents and businesses are reminded that tax changes for other jurisdictions, which make up about half the total tax bill, are not yet finalized and are not determined by Council.

For more information on the Town’s budget, please refer to the Financial Services section at www.sidney.ca.

Media Contacts:

Cliff McNeil-Smith

Mayor

250-656-1139, mayor@sidney.ca

Andrew Hicik

Director of Corporate Services

250-655-5410, ahicik@sidney.ca