City of Nanaimo chief financial officer Victor Mema presents the city’s 2018-2022 draft financial plan to city council at a committee of the whole meeting Nov. 27 at the Vancouver Island Conference Centre. (NEWS BULLETIN photo)

City council presented with draft financial plan

Councillors discussed the draft budget last week, next step is an e-town hall meeting Monday, Dec. 4

City councillors had a chance to discuss the draft financial plan last week, and now it’s the public’s turn.

The next step in the City of Nanaimo’s budget process is an e-town hall meeting Monday, Dec. 4.

Victor Mema, the city’s chief financial officer, presented the 2018-2022 draft financial plan to city councillors at a committee of the whole meeting Nov. 27 at the Vancouver Island Conference Centre.

The plan suggests a 2.6-per cent property tax increase as well as increases to water, sewer and garbage collection fees.

“I like the idea that we’re putting our Nanaimo budget on the table in December so that staff can start to implement plans,” said Coun. Jim Kipp.

Coun. Bill Bestwick asked if city departments had been provided with instruction about whether to increase, decrease or remain at the same level with their departmental budgets.

“The instructions asked for a neutral budget,” replied Mema. “Not necessarily status quo, but a cost-neutral budget in most respects and then try to make business cases to justify any increases that any department would have.”

Tracy Samra, the city’s chief administrative officer, said “we have not engaged at that level” of looking into trimming departmental budgets, because she said that there are other strategies to be considered first.

“The core services review is pretty clear on this. There’s a need to adopt a fiscal policy suite to assist us in the budget process and planning our budget,” she said. “There’s things that we can do now that will find efficiencies that will find ways of saving money in our budget without touching service levels, without touching staffing levels, without making those types of cuts, but simply looking more critically at how we plan.”

She congratulated city council for the projects that are built or in the works and suggested there will be projects within the 2018-2022 financial plan that councillors can prioritize or push back.

“You’re going to have an opportunity to question staff about what would that mean, does that mean that other projects get pushed out, if yes, which ones?” she said.

The e-town hall will start at 7 p.m. Dec. 4 at the conference centre and will run an hour to an hour and a half. For information about ways to participate, click here.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Nanaimo’s Western Edge Theatre returns to the stage in Port Theatre debut

Theatre group presents ‘2 Across,’ described as a ‘middle-aged romantic comedy’

Purebred breeders go for a walk in Nanaimo to show off their dogs

Purebred dog breeders sometimes get a bad rap, says event organizer

City reviewing plans for huge Sandstone project in south Nanaimo

Seacliff Properties says it’s been told to be ready for a public hearing this fall

Ferry riders say lower fares are what’s most needed to improve service

Provincial government announces findings of public engagement process

COVID-19 isn’t cancelling this year’s Tour de Rock

Alumni riders will cycle relay sections in their own communities

B.C. or Ontario? Residential school survivors fight move of court battle

It’s now up to Ontario’s Court of Appeal to sort out the venue question

B.C. transportation minister will not seek re-election

Claire Trevena has held the position since 2017

Body discovered floating in water near Lasqueti Island

JRCC reports personnel aboard fishing vessel made the find

Young B.C. cancer survivor rides 105-km with Terry Fox’s brother

Jacob Bredenhof and Darrell Fox’s cycling trek raises almost $90,000 for cancer research

B.C. migrant, undocumented workers rally for permanent residency program

Rally is part of the Amnesty for Undocumented Workers Campaign led by the Migrant Workers Centre

Preparations underway for pandemic election in Saskatchewan and maybe B.C.

Administrators in B.C. and around the country are also looking to expand voting by mail during the pandemic

Nearly 20 per cent of COVID-19 infections among health-care workers by late July

WHO acknowledged the possibility that COVID-19 might be spread in the air under certain conditions

Nanaimo RCMP community policing needs a few good volunteers

Volunteers needed to help Nanaimo RCMP and city deliver crime prevention and safety programs

Protesters march in Nanaimo, calling for greater protection of forests and watersheds

March for the Forests happened downtown on Friday afternoon

Most Read