Huron County Approves 2017 Draft Budget

Huron County councillors approved a draft budget at this week’s committee of the whole meeting.

Treasurer Michael Blumhagen explains the total levy for 2017 is approximately $39-million and that represents an increase of 4.33% over last year, which translates into a tax increase of 0.26% over 2016. He adds to get to that number it was necessary to take about $600,000 out of reserves for Public Works. Of more concern was the need to take about $900,000 out of reserves to cover operating costs just to maintain current levels of service.

Blumhagen says taking money out of reserves to cover operating costs is not sustainable over the long term. He says the county, like the lower-tier municipalities, is having to deal with funding cuts from the province, particularly the Ontario Municipal Partnership funding and that is having a significant impact on their budget.

The budget will be presented for final approval at the county council meeting on March 8.