Kitimat property taxes set for a three per cent rise

After a special budget meeting Wednesday, councillors set property taxes to a three per cent rise.

Kitimat residents will see a three per cent rise to their Kitimat property tax portion of their annual tax bill.

That comes after a special three-hour long meeting on April 16 dedicated just to budget discussion.

Councillors had entertained discussion on April 14 but determined the issue needed a meeting without distractions of other items on the agenda.

Councillor Mario Feldhoff had at that earlier meeting believed that taxes could potentially only need to rise 1.5 per cent instead of three.

He voted against the three per cent tax raise at the April 16 meeting, as did Mayor Joanne Monaghan.

That three per cent rise will be equally distributed among the various property classes.

Among other items that came from the discussion, council has directed staff to investigate the feasibility of constructing a building at the Kitimat landfill or at Forest Avenue for the Kitimat Understanding the Environment (KUTE) operations.

Also, a motion carried unanimously will move to a higher priority a plan to develop a sidewalk from Omenica Street to Lahakas Boulevard. The District Treasurer said the motion does not add the walkway project to the 2014 budget.

Other budget additions was an extra $20,000 added to the budget to install a fence at the Kitimat Community Humane Society building.

$5,000 was added to the budget for lettering and signs at Riverlodge.

Staff has also been asked to designate funds in the 2014 budget to acquire Crown Lands for public recreation purposes.