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Inside Out
News from around the horseshoe

By Bill Hutchins Illustration by Wayne Westfall

Kingston homeowners face a familiar property tax hike of 2.5 percent in 2018.

City councillors heard details of the latest operating budget after two nights of listening to staff presentations, and were expected to rubber-stamp it at their mid-December meeting. The budget stands at $378.2 million, a spending increase of $17.7 million over 2017, to cover the cost of providing municipal programs and services.

Treasurer Desiree Kennedy says the staff-recommended tax increase — the fourth consecutive year for the same 2.5 percent increase — falls within the guidelines set by council during their term. “We’ve got a strategic plan. We’ve got priorities set by council. The budget is really just attaching the funding to those priorities.”

The budget includes a built-in tax hike that reflects a 1.5 percent increase to cover inflation, higher salaries and other new spending initiatives, plus a dedicated 1 percent capital levy to help fund infrastructure projects and purchases. . . .

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