Central Saanich council is once again doing the unenviable job of reviewing and debating the annual budget developed by staff.
The end result, for the past 16 years at least has been a property tax increase (significantly more than the inflation rate) and is frequently accompanied by an announcement of a variation of the old cliché: “It’s a difficult task each year to keep taxes low while maintaining services.” I expect that a similar tax increase will come to pass this year.
With a couple of exceptions, council members have [in the past] voted to accept staff recommendations to approve a tax lift.
An approved motion that would freeze or reduce taxes has not occurred.
This year, several councillors are rookies and they will likely rely even more on staff recommendations.
To rescue them from the budget tedium, I suggest that council only look at the bottom line and direct staff to regroup and come up with a budget that does not increase the bottom line.
Central Saanich now has the dubious distinction of being the third highest taxed of the 13 municipalities in the Greater Victoria area.
Tax payers might be moved to contact council and let them know that you are fed up with tax increases.
Frank Witthoeft, Central Saanich