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Council to begin deep dive into a $87.4M capital budget

Council will begin considerations for an $87.4 million capital budget for 2023 Wednesday, Feb. 1-3.

Capital budgets are planned spending for reconstruction or major improvements to infrastructure such as roads and bridges, as well as acquiring major equipment, technology or studies that guide long-term planning. The proposed rate-supported capital budget for water and wastewater services is $25.1 million.

Big on the list is the $64.9M new long-term care home re-development for a 160-bed facility to be located adjacent to the existing 50-year-old H.J. McFarland Memorial Home. This will have an annual impact on the operating budget of $421,000 to support debt financing on a 25-year term. The project takes advantage of $42.2M in provincial funding provided design can reach a substantive stage by Aug. 2023. The $64.9M price tag is projected to be paid for through grants ($17.9 million), development charges ($2.3 million), fundraising ($1 million) and long-term debt ($43.7 million).

As well as much discussion on road reconstruction and rehabilitation, some of the proposed projects include improvements to the Western dynamic beach system from Huyck’s Point north; South Marysburgh landfill purchase of land; Centennial Park drainage improvements; preparing land for future fire and rescue training; repairs to Wellington Library and to Rose House, Wellington and Macaulay museums, roof replacement for Benson Hall and Westfall Canteen; North Marysburgh Town Hall storage room addition, Bloomfield Town Hall accessibility ramp, Crystal Palace phase two.

Also proposed are upgrades to Jack Taylor and Consecon parks, canteen equipment and a sound system at the Picton arena.

Work yards repairs proposals include the Sophiasburgh and Sandy Hook depots sand storage dome repairs and an overhead door replacement at the Ameliasburgh Roads depot.

Council will also hear about the condition of the municipality’s fleet which includes trucks, road grader, sweeper and light duty vehicles. Deferring replacement of a $308,000 wheel loader is being recommended. A returning ask includes a $224,000 land ambulance and more than a million in fire fleet equipment including replacement pumpers for Picton and Milford and a mechanic vehicle. Deferring the Milford pumper is being proposed to save $650,000, but council is being made aware the vehicle no longer meets industry standards and may cause residents to see insurance premium increases.

Council is scheduled to hear presentations over three days.

At the evening meeting on Wednesday, Feb. 1, Amanda Carter, Director of Finance, will provide an overview of the key recommendations in the proposed 2023 capital budget.

During the day sessions Feb. 2-3, County senior staff will take council through the capital budget in greater detail.

Council is to review the proposed 2023 operating budget Feb. 22-24, during which time it will confirm the final tax levy. The proposed operating budget is to be released by Feb. 16.

Budget deliberations will be held at Highline Hall at the Wellington and District Community Centre. The public is invited to attend in person or watch the meeting live on the County’s YouTube channel.

Click here to view the capital budget presentation on expenditures

 

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