Town Treasurer Rhonda Whitmarsh dropped a financial bomb on the residents of Mississippi Mills when she presented the first cut of the Town’s 2020 Budget to Council last Tuesday night. According to Ms. Whitmarsh, the 2020 Budget is not presently balanced and there will be a shortfall of plus $1.3M.
What does this mean for the residents of Mississippi Mills and what does it mean for our new Councillors? For our new Councillors it means that they are left to clean up the previous Council’s financial mess. Included in her presentation was a long list of over-expenditures attributable to the previous Council
For the residents of Mississippi Mills it means a potential tax increase in excess of 13%. Every $100,000 increase in the Town’s operating and administration expenses is equal to a tax increase of 1%. Therefore, the $1.3M shortfall translates into a possible tax increase of 13.5%. Mississippi Mills taxpayers could face a significant tax increase if the Budget is adopted in its present form.
PRATAC’s Communications Committee will be delving deeper into the 2020 Budget documents over the next few weeks and will keep its members apprised of its findings as more is learned.
In the interim, members are urged to support our new Councillors as they dig through the Town’s 150 page budget document in an attempt to balance the Town’s finances. Members can view the proposed 2020 Budget posted on the Town’s website.
The next Budget meeting is scheduled for November 21st and we recommend that PRATAC members attend to hear Department Heads present their plans for the 2020 fiscal year.
In PRATAC’s opinion, a 13.5% tax increase is unacceptable. We trust our members concur.