The City of Estevan has released their proposal for the 2018 City Budget on their website. 

"This is administration's budget proposal to council," explained City Manager, Jeff Ward. "We'll leave that out here for about a month, hopefully everyone in the public will have a chance to look at the document and provide some feedback. Council is trying to be as transparent as possible and is looking forward to any feedback provided by public."

He adds that they are looking at a 1% tax increase. 

"We think it's a very balanced approach to budgeting, a very modest tax increase while still maintaining some large capital projects such as King Street and the second water intake. Paying down debt of $4 million while terming out a loan of two so reducing our net debt by $2 million."

"We're also being very conscious of the operating expenditures. There's about eight to ten positions this year that have vacated that haven't been filled to help reduce our costs. Obviously last year we were hit pretty hard by the provincial budget in the grant in lieu reductions as well as the decrease in PST funding which comes through from them to us as a municipal operating grant. We're trying our best to be conscious of all of our operating expenditures and making sure that we can still help move Estevan forward by continuing to improve the infrastructure and reducing debt at the same time."

Ward also explained some changes he would like to see to how water main replacements are funded. 

"In the past, what was done, was there was local improvements. These were improvements that were petitioned through the province to local homeowner who were being affected. These were improvements that were funded by the city and paid back over ten years, a portion by the property owners. This process is a little outdated, most cities are not using local improvements anymore. What City Council is proposing is that on each two month billing cycle, there's a $20 infrastructure fee on utility billing. What the fee is meant to do is to offset some of the cost  of those improvement so there's not as much burden on the property owner." 

"What they're presenting, is that we increase that fee from $20 to $30 with no change in the consumption rate so the water rate will stay the same. The only change on your bill will be the infrastructure fee. And what we would do is start creating a funded reserve of about $600,000-$650,000 a year so we can complete these water main replacements as they pop up without having to go to the homeowners for secondary funding. "

Ward also added that there are one park will see some improvements as well.

"Over the last few years, we've really looked at our outdoor pools and Public Health has changed its standards that are required on these pools. One of them is requiring a relining of the pool at Hillcrest. We did put in for funding and we did get a funding amount of $15,000. The total relining is about $50,000."

City Council will have the opportunity to read the budget, receive feedback and discuss the proposed budget before voting on it in January. 

"It'll be the first or second meeting in January. Again, we encourage everyone to provide feedback to their Councillors, send an email to myself or the City Clerk or come to City Hall and have a discussion with either of us. My door is always open and we encourage feedback from the public."

You can read a copy of the proposed budget on the City's website

More Local News

SaskPower Pleased With Performance Of CCS at Boundary Dam Power Station

SaskPower’s carbon capture and storage facility at the Boundary Dam Power Station had a great year in 2018, according to their vice president of power production, Howard Matthews. The facility…

Millions for Crop Research in Saskatchewan

On Wednesday, the federal Minister of Agriculture Lawrence MacAulay and Saskatchewan Agriculture Minister David Marit announced more than $12 million in funding for forty-four crop-related research…

Humane Society Receives Big Boost With $5000 Grant

The humane society has recently received a $5000 grant from the Western Financial western community foundation. Angela Prette with the humane society was extremely happy with the amount of the grant…

Bitter Winds Sticking Around

After some balmy temperatures and days to start the new year, more traditional Saskatchewan weather has moved in for the third week of January. Cold days and even colder nights with bitter winds is…

Snowplow Safety Important For Everyone

With the lack of snowfall we've seen in the southeast corner of the province, it's easy to forget about the drivers that keep the roads clear and drivers safe. Snowplow operators are often overlooked…

Accident On 13th Ave and King Street

A two-vehicle collision took place early Wednesday morning. "At approximately 7:45 this morning, a two-vehicle collision occurred at the intersection of 13th Avenue and King Street," explained…

The Difference Between Norovirus and Influenza Explained

Norovirus has been identified as the cause of a number of cases of nausea, diarrhea, and vomiting in the province. "Norovirus is a type of virus that affects the intestinal system," explained Doctor…

City's Proposed 2019 Budget Includes No Increase In Taxes Or Utility Rates

The city is planning some ambitious ideas for the proposed 2019 budget, but they won’t be including any higher taxes or utlility increases. The proposed budget was prepared by city administration and…

Pharmacies Running Out Of Flu Vaccine

It’s been a tough flu season in Canada and now some pharmacies in the Estevan area have been running out of the flu vaccine. Jeff Hilderman at the Estevan Pharmasave has seen his pharmacy run out of… is Estevan's only source for community news and information such as weather and classifieds.

Search the Biz Guide