Area B has lowest tax increase in 2015 RDN budget

Derek Kilbourn

Sounder News

Wednesday, January 21 2015

The Regional District of Nanaimo (RDN) has released the preliminary budget for the next fiscal year. On average, residents of Area B (Gabriola, Mudge and DeCourcy Islands) will see an increase of $6 per $100,000 in the 2014-2015 budget, increasing from $83/$100,000 to $89/$100,000.

Some of the increases come from:

Implementation of the Gabriola Taxi Saver: $15,000;

Increase of $2,000 to Gabriola Recreation Society (GRS), putting total budget for the GRS at $102,739;

Gabriola Community Parks budget is increasing by $4,493 from $179,729 to $184,222;

Additional $9,085 from Gabriola for library services for the Vancouver Island Regional Library (VIRL);

Aside from those increases, Area B will be saving $6,574 per year now that the electoral area is operating out of the RDN’s Regional Growth Strategy.

Throughout the RDN, Gabriola is seeing the lowest increase in taxes - Parksville is seeing the highest increase at $15 per $100,000.

The entire RDN budget will see a total of $121.5 million in expenditures in 2015, an increase of 11.4 per cent from 2014. The primary change is a $9.4 million increase in capital expenditures.

Islands Trust taxes will not increase for next fiscal year

On the Islands Trust side of things, the Islands Trust Council is looking to adopt a budget of $7.189 million for 2015-2016. 

Council expects any increase in expenditures to be balanced by application revenue as well as a transfer of funds from the General Revenue Surplus Fund of $262,223.

There is no tax increase associated with this budget, except for the Salt Spring Island Local Trust area and Bowen Island.

Trust Council noted in its release of the next year’s budget that even though Islands Trust is proposing no tax increase this year, a Trust area taxpayer may pay more or less tax toward the Trust in 2015-2016 due to the changes in the assessment or classification of each property.

Fifty-nine per cent of Islands Trust expenses go to local planning services; 13 per cent into Trust Council and Trust Area Services; seven per cent to the Islands Trust Fund; and 20 per cent into administration and the CAO office. After considering input from the public, the Islands Trust Council will adopt a final budget for 2015-2016 at its quarterly meeting March 10 - 12, 2015, on Gabriola Island.