At its February 13, 2018 meeting, Elgin County Council approved a $ 64,217,739 operating budget, with a 2.1 per cent increase in County taxes on an average property representing a 0.5% increase on the average home or approximately $7. This is 2% lower than previously anticipated.
Council remains committed to achieving affordable taxes while maintaining and expanding high quality services for residents. The County has been able to do this, despite significant revenue losses of approximately $6 million in OMPF and Ford property tax, through the use of reserves, grant funding, and measured tax increments over ten years.
In 2018, Council will continue to implement several initiatives committed to in previous budget cycles including the reconstruction of Terrace Lodge, timely maintenance of existing road infrastructure, a $3.5 million grant to the St. Thomas Elgin General Hospital, and investment in small business through a Community Improvement Plan (CIP).
“Council is committed to the completion of infrastructure projects that will enhance the quality of life for residents of all ages,” said Elgin County Warden David Marr. “We are also committed to providing these enhancements in a way that requires minimal incremental tax increases.”
Highlights of Council’s commitment to improving the prosperity and quality of life in the community over the next ten years include:
The Marketing and Communications Coordinator presented Council with the 2017 Economic Development Year in Review Report. This report outlines the Economic Development and Tourism department’s activities, initiatives and partnerships over the past 12 months. The report is broken down into three sections: Investment Attraction, Business/Community Development, and Tourism.
Highlights of the report included information about the Elgincentives Community Improvement Plan, the Elgin Business Resource Centre Satellite Offices in Aylmer and Dutton, and tourism marketing initiatives such as the launch of several new promotional videos and the creative use of social media marketing.
A full copy of the 2017 Economic Development Year in Review Report can be found here.
Elgin County Council applauded the decision by the Ministry of Transportation to install temporary high tension cable barriers in the median along the Highway 401 corridor between London and Tilbury. Council also urged the Ministry to ensure that these cables are only a temporary measure that will eventually be replaced by permanent concrete barriers which are a more effective means of preventing transport trucks from crossing over the median.