Council approved service level adjustments for year three and four of the 2022-2025 Budget that results in an Operating Budget of $76.708 million (2024) and $80.480 million (2025) respectively. These adjustments balance affordability with meaningful investments in strategic areas, such as community safety, emergency response and transit services.
Council approved a 4.6% property tax rate increase for 2024. The average household in Okotoks assessed at $551,000 will see an increase of $10.27 per month in property tax, this is an increase of $123.24 annually.
Considerable investment was made in Okotoks Fire & Rescue to fund four firefighters to meet committed service response times and to respond to an increasing volume of medical calls. The budget also invested $694,000 in RCMP over the next two years; and $500,000 over the next two years to increase transit services. In addition to the four firefighters, 10 additional staff positions were approved to prepare for growth and delivery of core services and meet gaps in service levels.
Council expressed the intention for an increase to franchise fees for natural gas customers pending Alberta Utilities Commission’s approval. It is an opportunity to increase revenue more equitably, as nearly all customers use utilities, but not all customers pay property taxes. With this change, the average utility customer could see an increase of about $6.82 per month or $81.81 per year.
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