WVD Budget Revised – Still With 2% Tax Increase
The WVD budget was revised from a 6.11% increase in taxes – to a less irrational 4.5% increase .. before the Covid-19 reality hit in April . At that point Council promised a review and further consultation. The revision was published on Wednesday 16th April and to be considered and decided by Council on Monday 20th. This gave FOUR (4) days for public comment.
See ‘HOT TOPICS’ & below is our MESSAGE TO COUNCIL
Budget 2 needs significant further reductions in expenditures to adapt to a severely crippled economy. Our economy is not going to bounce back quickly. We are in for further sharp declines in economic activity and a long and slow retracted recovery as social distancing needs to be maintained and the virus continues to circulate. You as our leaders need to plan for the worst while hoping and praying for the best. We strongly recommend the following:
0% increase in Property TAX
20% reduction in senior staff SALARIES.
20% reduction in Mayor and Council stipends- while charitable donations are admirable they do not have any impacts on the COSTS of DWV.
DEFER any climate emergency measures (apart from $200,000 to upgrade Municipal Hall while under construction)
DEFER non-vital projects, e.g. 2195 Gordon, Arts Centre etc
DEFER all fleet and vehicle replacements
DEFER Nelson Bridge removal
Seriously examine every operating and capital expense – only need-to-haves should remain- NOT NICE-TO-HAVES
Budget BEFORE Priorities Are Set ?
It was stated at the April 20th Council meeting that the Strategic Priorities would be reviewed on April 21, the day following the Council meeting.
Why weren’t the six Strategic Goals revised immediately following the Local State of Emergency declaration of March 20th?
Strategic Goals drive the budget !
This might suggest the Budget 2 document was based on outdated priorities? The key and perhaps only strategic goals and priorities for the next year are delivery of essential services and financial survival. The budget should be based on these priorities.