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Didsbury council approves $500,000 capital budget

Council decided not to approve the proposed spending of $300,000 for the 20th Street asphalt mill and overlay project
didsbury-news

DIDSBURY - Council has approved a $500,000 capital budget for 2023, which includes $50,000 for Didsbury Memorial Complex improvements.

The approval came by the way of motion at the Jan. 10 regularly scheduled Town of Didsbury council meeting, held in person and on YouTube.

The capital budget also includes $65,000 for train station exterior painting, $55,000 for curling rink HVAC replacement, $150,000 for new vehicle replacement, as well as $130,000 skid steer and rough-cut mower attachment. 

Mayor Rhonda Hunter said the $500,000 will be funded through reserves and grants.

Council decided not to approve the proposed spending of $300,000 for the 20th Street asphalt mill and overlay project, she noted.

“We don’t want that to come out of the operating budget; we want to explore other funding options,” she said.

“Right now it is shown as a transfer from operating budget to the capital budget to cover the cost. We asked that administration to find out if the MSI (Municipal Sustainability Initiative) provincial grant or the CCBF (Canada Community Building Fund) grant can be allocated to the project so operating budget isn’t affected.”

Meanwhile, work on the 2023 operating budget is ongoing, with council hoping to keep the 2023 tax increase at four per cent or less, she said.

“We are trying to target around four per cent and if we can get lower of course we will, but when we look at our increases right now (including) $115,000 for utilities and increase contracted services, repairs and maintenance and $116,000 added in to the RCMP, that’s $221,000 right there.

“We want to work towards a four per cent increase and if we can get it lower we will.”

The proposed operating budget will come back before council for consideration on Jan. 24, she said.

All council members attended the Jan. 10 meeting.