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Council approves budget for 2019

Budget builds on Council's new vision for Lac La Biche County

Post Date:12/11/2018 10:44 AM

Lac La Biche County Council has approved the municipal budget for 2019, several months earlier than in previous years.

Over a six-week period, Council reviewed a proposed budget and added, modified and removed items. For the first time, the annual budget is accompanied by a three-year operating plan and five-year capital plan, as required by the province’s updated Municipal Government Act. These plans detail how the County foresees spending in the next several years.

Operating expenditures for 2019 are set at $57.67 million, and the County is currently targeting a surplus of $3.73 million. Budgeting for a surplus allows the County to finance unforeseen costs throughout the year. The budget is a living document, subject to change as Council directs.

The budget also includes approximately $31.36 million in new capital spending. Significant projects include paving the northern section of the Plamondon-Caslan Connector (Range Road 162), developing new boat launches and completing outdoor sports fields at the Bold Center.

The County is also building for the future in another sense, by committing to long-term guiding documents like an updated Municipal Development Plan and a modernized Economic Development Strategy.

“I would like to thank Council and Administration for their commitment to finalizing the budget in a timely manner,” said Mayor Omer Moghrabi. “We started our budgeting process earlier this time, and that has allowed us to adopt a solid plan before the next fiscal year even starts. This plan reflects our vision for our community, with more enhancements to local infrastructure, and projects that will move our County forward in terms of economic development, recreation, social wellness and tourism. We envision an innovative, resilient community where residents enjoy a high quality of life and visitors want to come back again and again, and our budget will help make this a reality.”

A full summary of the budget is available by clicking here. The last part of financial planning for 2019 is setting property tax rates, which will be done in the spring.