A $12-million roster of city projects is one vote away from getting the go-ahead.
Nanaimo council has approved third reading for a $4-million increase to the 2014-18 financial plan bylaw for projects the city wants to get started on before the new budget gets approved.
Final adoption was slated for a special council meeting Monday.
Not all city politicians are OK with the early approval list, which cover expenditures like $200,000 for Cliff McNabb Arena amenities and $610,000 for an environmental site analysis and removal of an old Canadian Pacific ferry dock on the south industrial waterfront.
Coun. Jim Kipp questioned the necessity of amenity upgrades to Cliff McNabb Arena and said he’s looking to make cuts while Coun. Bill Bestwick said some of the early intake approvals could be done through partnerships, referred to future years or not at all. Coun. Bill Yoachim was also opposed.
But councillors Diane Brennan and Ian Thorpe agreed its an issue of spending some money now or more down the road if financial items are pushed into following years.
“We can afford this in this budget with in fact a zero-per cent increase in our operations save for one per cent we are putting away for asset management,” Brennan said. “But if you start whittling away and pushing things into next year’s budget what you’ll do is, you’ll do a great job this year and sort of be the lighthouse for the rest of the province and then boom, you are into next year and you are really a loser, you’re down there, you have a five-, six-per cent increase.”