Saturday, February 16, 2013

City Council Adopts 2013 - 2017 Financial Plan

Council Will Adopt 2013 - 2017 Financial Plan
Approving Spending $851,046,365.00
Increasing Property Taxes 23%
Monday, Feb. 18, 2013

The last item on the Feb. 18, 2013 city council meeting includes the adoption of Bylaw 7162 which will approve the spending of $851,046,365.00 which represents a 23% increase in taxes without one moment of public deliberation by this city council!

You can expect the budget to pass without so much as a whimper from those you elected in 2011 to watch over your affairs. Holding the line on taxes is something this council has little interest in at all. Perhaps reading and understanding the financial document they are passing is beyond the skill set possessed by some Councillors, who we are reminded consider the advice from staff sufficient input to make up for their own lack of understanding.

Councilor Greves is of the opinion the city is not collecting enough taxes now, so don't expect him to 'roll up his sleeves' and see if there are savings to be had for the Nanaimo taxpayer. You may recall last year, that after much consideration city council led by Councilor Brennan elected to increase the budget by $700,000 against the recommendation of the city manager.

Don't dare mention looking for efficiencies via a core review as some councillors seem unable to comprehend the fact it is not a witch hunt looking to fire the staff but in large corporations there are always efficiencies to be found.

Zero based budgeting is the perfect place to begin to find efficiencies, of course that may require a level of understanding well beyond this council's ability.

I suspect any deliberation done by this council vis a vis the financial plan consisted of asking Mr. Clemens or Mr. Kenning if the items in the plan are necessary expenses, to which they would reply 'yes', which would give councillors all the input necessary to give the nod to this budget which is over 85% of ONE BILLION DOLLARS.


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