Spruce Grove City Council has approved the 2019-2021 Corporate Plan, which includes a 3.5 per cent municipal tax increase for next year.
The plan, which was approved during the Nov. 26 council meeting, also includes a 6.42 per cent increase in the utility rate, from $5.606 to $5.966 per cubic metre, and no change to the solid waste collection rate.
City council also approved a change in method and an increase in rate to 25% for natural gas franchise fees for 2019. The new approach is designed to be fairer and less volatile, and is the approach used by the majority of municipalities. There will be no increase to electric franchise fees.
For a household with a median assessed value of $389,555 and an average monthly water consumption of 14 cubic metres, the estimated impact will be $15.25 per month.
Property owners will receive their tax notices at the end of May, after the actual mill rate has been set.
Some of the projects and initiatives included in the plan for 2019 are:
- Create and implement local transit service within Spruce Grove with bus stops located throughout the city.
- Expand commuter transit service with additional morning and afternoon trips on Route 560.
- Hire two additional general duty RCMP officers for the local detachment.
- Hire eight additional firefighters.
- Complete construction of the new integrated RCMP Facility.
- Continue work on the renovation and expansion of the City’s Protective Services Facility.
- Develop New Beginnings – an Indigenous Engagement Improvement Strategy to create social sustainability and increase access to culturally appropriate programs, services and supports for Indigenous residents.
- Complete the design for Boundary Road construction from Highway 16A to Grove Drive.
- Develop neighbourhood parks within newly developing areas as required.
- Continue implementation of the Jubilee Park Master Plan and the Outdoor Facilities Strategy.
- Prepare a City Centre Area Redevelopment Plan for council approval.
- Develop a business plan to support the recommendations from the recently completed Broadband Strategy, which would see the City taking an active role in facilitating the development of digital infrastructure.
- Upgrade the City’s permitting software to streamline the administration and processing of development permits.
Additional details of the 2019-2021 Corporate Plan will be included in the Winter 2019 issue of CityPulse magazine. The complete 2019-2021 Corporate Plan is also available on the City’s website.