(© Can Stock Photo / PaulPaladin)

CK prepares for 2020 budget

The 2020 budget deliberations are just around the corner and residents are being encouraged to give their input.

The budget process kicks off on Wednesday at 6 p.m. when the municipal draft budget will be presented to council at the Civic Centre. The draft will include the proposed tax increase, if there is one.

Any community groups that want to request funding or any organizations wishing to comment on the budget process can schedule a deputation for opening night by calling  519-360-1998 or emailing ckfps@chatham-kent.ca. Additionally, when opening night starts, the Executive Overview Binder will be made available on the municipality’s website.

Following opening night, several community consultation meetings will be taking place across Chatham-Kent. These community consultations are a chance for residents across Chatham-Kent to learn more about the proposed budget, ask questions and provide feedback to councillors.

Each meeting will start with a half-hour open-house style format where residents can have one-on-one discussions with councillors and administration. Afterwards, there will be a formal presentation as well as a question and answer period. The meetings are as follows:

Tuesday, January 21, 4:30 to 6 p.m.

  • Brunner Centre, 32 Wallace Street, Thamesville
  • Tilbury Arena, Ryder Hall, 49 Bond Avenue, Tilbury

Wednesday, January 22, 4:30 pm to 6 p.m.

  • Blenheim High School Cafeteria, 163 Chatham Street South, Blenheim
  • Wallaceburg Municipal office, 786 Dufferin Avenue, Wallaceburg

Thursday, January 23, 4:30 pm to 6 p.m.

  • Active Lifestyle Centre, 20 Merritt Avenue, Chatham

The actual budget deliberation meetings will be held on January 28, 29 and 30 from 6 p.m. until 10 p.m. at the Civic Centre. Additional meetings on February 4 and 5 will be held if needed.

Thanks to some slights changes approved by council in 2019, this year’s budget process will be a little more accessible for residents. All budget deliberations, as well as opening night, will be broadcast live on YourTV as well as live-streamed on YourTV Chatham-Kent’s YouTube channel and Facebook Live feed.

Budget Chair Councillor Brock McGregor said he hopes that residents take advantage of the new feature.

“We want residents to be informed about municipal spending,” he said. “The more information they have, the better feedback we receive as council members.”

Written and verbal presentation of up to five minutes are welcome each night and municipal staff recommend that anyone wishing to do so email ckfps@chatham-kent.ca in advance. General comments can also be sent through email or by calling 519-360-1998.