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2019 budget consultation process open to residents

POWELL RIVER, B.C. – You have the chance to share your thoughts on Powell River’s 2019 municipal budget.

For the third consecutive year, residents will be able to take part in the citizen budget process. According to the city, there were 958 visits to the citizen budget website and 154 responses submitted last year.

The operating budget of different services is displayed on the site with a slide impact bar, allowing participants to increase, decrease or maintain the service’s budget. If you slide in an increase, you must decrease another service’s budget by an equal amount, or increase property taxes to balance the budget.

“It basically challenges the residents of Powell River to create their own balanced budget. We’re trying to get input from residents to help with the prioritization of resources and the budgeting process,” said Ryan Youngman, Senior Accountant with the City of Powell River.

Residents can also provide written commentary regarding the budget.

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“Participants will be able to change the budgeted 2019 property tax increase of 1.5 per cent, which is based on a historical estimate of inflation,” read a notice from the city.

“The most recent BC consumer price index report produced by Statistics Canada indicates inflation of 3.0 per cent for the year ending October 2018. A 1.5 per cent increase represents a 28 dollar increase for the average assessed residential property.”

Feedback will be reviewed by mayor and council, and then shared with the public.

“We’re trying to get as many people involved as possible,” Youngman said.

“We’re trying to get an accurate representation of the population, and the more people that provide their input, the better sample that we get, that we can extrapolate to determine the priorities of residents.”

The citizen budget can be access via this link.

The tool will be available until February 9th, 2019.

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