MH council passes 2020 budget
By Chad Ingram
The following are brief reports of items discussed during a Feb. 27 Minden Hills council meeting.
Council passed the township’s 2020 budget, will includes a 5.3 per cent tax levy increase, equating to a tax rate increase of 2.15 per cent for residents. For a residential property with an assessed value of $300,000 in 2019 with a three per cent phased-in assessment increase, this would equate to an increase in taxes of $57.08 for the year. That’s for the lower-tier portion of residents’ tax bills, which also include a portion for the upper-tier of the county, as well as the school board. Haliburton County council passed the 2020 county budget in late January, with a 1.67 per cent tax rate increase. For residential properties, the tax increase translates to an additional $3.52 for every $100,000 of assessment. So the owner of a home assessed at $300,000 would pay an additional $10.46 at the upper tier for the year.
Increased waste haulage costs
Council approved a budget overage of $144,000 for the haulage of construction and demolition waste from the Scotch Line landfill by Miller Waste. As a report from public works director Travis Wilson indicated, in July of 2019, council hired Miller Waste for the job, at a rate of $40 per tonne for disposal and $1,400 per load for transport. “This quote was based on hauling to a specific facility,” the report read. “The amount of material on site at Scotch Line Landfill quickly used up the capacity at this facility organized by Miller.”
According to the report, a change in haulage distance and tipping fees for alternative sites has resulted in increased costs of $43 per tonne and $1,550 per load for transport. While $100,000 had been included for these costs in the 2019 budget, the total amount for those services exceeded that amount by $144,000. The report indicated that higher-than-anticipated tipping fee revenues for the township in 2019, some $60,000 more than budgeted, had helped offset these costs. Council approved the overage and also that any further unfinanced haulage costs come from landfill reserves in the absence of a departmental surplus.
Financing Irondale landfill closure
Council approved a staff recommendation that the closure of the township’s Irondale landfill, scheduled to take place this fall, be funded internally using cash reserves, at an interest rate of three per cent over a duration of 96 months, and that interest earned from the internal funding be budgeted as a contribution to landfill reserves. Also, any costs that substantially exceed the anticipated $290,5000 cost of the closure are to come back to the council table.
The following are brief reports of items discussed during a Feb. 27 meeting of Minden Hills council.