Inverness Municipal Council approved its 2022-2023 General Operating Budget during yesterday’s regular monthly meeting in Port Hood.
Finance Director Tanya Tibbo told council the residential property rate of $1.05 and the commercial rate of $1.91 have been maintained, and although revenues were $19,736,200, and expenses $20,499,500, she said $763,300 in financing and transfers was required to balance the budget, which included $943,300 of the surplus from the 2022 fiscal year.
Tibbo said 89 per cent of revenues are from property taxes and payments in lieu of taxes, while 11.04% of expenses are for RCMP costs alone. In general 37% of expenses are for mandatory contributions that also include corrections, libraries, roads, and education.
As far as area rates, the only changes are a five cent increase for the West Bay Road Volunteer Fire Department and a slight decrease in waste water services for District 1, as well as Districts 3-6.
Tibbo said the budget allots $1,077,150 in grants to organizations that provide services for residents of the county, not including the $326,500 in property tax exemptions to not-for-profit and charitable groups. She said this budget increased grants to organizations by $47,000.
District 4 Councillor John MacLennan said he voted against the budget because with prices increasing, this is not the time to move money around or raise taxes, but cut spending which could mean laying off staff.