No municipal tax increase proposed for LaSalle

LaSalle Town Council in session on August 22, 2017. Photo by Mark Brown/Blackburn News.

The 2019 budget has been set for the town of LaSalle.

LaSalle Town Council approved in principle the town’s budget plan for the coming year, starting with their session late Thursday night and concluding early Friday morning. The town’s administration recommended a zero per cent municipal tax increase. However, homeowners may still see a tax increase on their bills as a result of their most recent MPAC reassessments.

Mayor Marc Bondy, overseeing his first town budget, said he is pleased with the efforts made by councillors and the town’s departments to bring the budget together.

“We thank the administration for presenting us with a budget that is balanced. It is a budget that has considered the needs and wants of all departments,” said Bondy. “Our administrative team strives to keep our current levels of service while considering suggestions for changes or new requests.”

Dale Langlois, the town’s treasurer and finance director, said the new development going on in LaSalle is keeping the municipal tax rate at bay.

“The town has been able to keep the municipal tax rate the same as 2018 due to the significant amount of new construction that has occurred,” said Langlois. “Without this growth, the town would either need to raise the tax rate or scale back the additions that are included in the 2019 budget.”

The new spending plan includes a $2.6 million levy increase over last year, for a total levy of $34.3 million. These are attributed to an increase of $1.3 million in new construction, plus $1.3 million from phased in re-assessment on existing properties.

Among the items included in the budget are the continued build-up of supplies identified by LaSalle’s master fire plan, $500,000 for improvements seen in all other master plans, funding for potential new positions and to handle any labour-related challenges, and an additional $640,000 to be allocated for replacing existing infrastructure such as sewers and drainage.

Council is expected to vote the budget into law at their next regular session on January 22.