Debate sparked about town’s budgeting process

Ponoka Golf Course update and other council briefs

  • Sep. 10, 2020 12:45 p.m.

There’ll be no workshop between administration and Ponoka town council to set direction for this year’s budget.

Administration felt it would be helpful to get instructions on whether councillors wanted a tax increase to maintain service levels, no tax increase and decreased service levels, or a tax decrease with some services reduced.

“In order for us to begin preparing the budget, for us to meet council’s expectations as well, recognizing there has been a lot of change this year with COVID, we have removed some of the items from the budget,” said Sandra Lund, adding a workshop would be helpful if council had the time.

Lund is the general manager of corporate services, but was the acting chief administrative officer at this week’s meeting.

Coun. Carla Prediger didn’t feel a workshop was necessary, saying that over the past seven years, the parameters have already been well identified.

“One of my requests, would be, don’t come to us with a number that requires excessive deliberation,” said Prediger.

“Come to us with a number that we’ve usually been able to settle. I don’t think that requires a workshop. I think that just requires due diligence and finding a more common negotiating amount, percentage, than what we’ve had historically, that takes us one day to whittle down to what we even find as palatable.”

Lund responded that is administration’s goal as well.

“At 13 per cent starting? No,” said Prediger.

Tim Schmidt, director of planning and development, said a conversation about revenues and expenditures would be beneficial.

Nov. 18 and 19 were set as budget deliberation dates.

Town of Ponoka

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