Saugeen Shores resident wants more transparency during budget talks

Saugeen Shores resident Laura Robinson.

Saugeen Shores resident Laura Robinson says she wants to better understand how town council spends their money.

In a delegation at Monday night’s council meeting, Robinson expressed concern over funds going towards expenses like conferences, instead of community initiatives like the Women’s House serving Grey Bruce. She said she would like to see more accountability and transparency between council and the public.

By redistributing some unspent money, council voted in favour of giving a one time donation of $5,000 to the Saugeen Rail Trail, and $2,500 each to the Women’s House and the Huron Shores Hospice.

Robinson said she hoped for more.

“I assumed that they were automatically going to give $2,500 [to the Women’s House]. I’m shocked that it wasn’t in the budget. I’m glad it was added but it’s not enough.”

She said the Women’s House has over $190,000 to raise this year to keep all their programs running.

Robinson said she hoped for more.

Mayor Luke Charbonneau said he would like to see more rules put in place as a guideline to how they spread their donations.

“It’s a prudent thing to do when we’re giving grants, to make sure that everyone knows that those will be reconsidered every year. Organizations shouldn’t incorporate them into their operating [budgets], and come to rely on them year over year,” he said.