Brantford Council approved their 2023 Operating Budget during their regular meeting on Tuesday, February 28, 2023.
Council approved the budget following a 2023 City Budget public consultation process whereby over 1,500 residents participated, and several weeks of meetings throughout the month of February, to deliver value to taxpayers in the implementation of priority programs and services that reflect the community’s feedback.
At the beginning of the City operating budget process on February 5, 2023, the tax increase starting point for the average residential property was 3.53%. Following several weeks of meetings, direction provided by Estimates Committee members, recommendations from staff and a comprehensive review of the City’s 7,500 line-item budget, an operating budget of $182.4 million was adopted resulting in a 2.24% tax increase to the average residential property.
The City’s Operating Budget increase this year is the second lowest increase in the province among single tier municipalities with a population over 100,000 people. Excluding external Boards and Agencies made up of Brantford Police Services, Brantford Public Library, John Noble Home and the Brant County Health Unit, the City’s portion of the increase of only 1.75% is well below the current rate of inflation of 5.92%.
The overall 2.24% average residential tax increase is reflective of priorities as identified by the community, including:
- A commitment to public safety by investing in Brantford Police, Fire and Paramedic services
- increase in support of the Brant County Health Unit
- necessary infrastructure upgrades to City roads, sewers, bridges and streetlights
- investment in the implementation of a weekly curbside Green Bin collection program for residential food and organic wastes, beginning November 1, 2023
- increased investment in City services including by-law enforcement, downtown security services, the Red-Light Camera Program to enhance traffic calming and mitigate speeding, and other programs that directly impact residents’ quality of life.
“Like other municipalities, we are currently facing several new economic realities outside of our control, including skyrocketing inflation, cost increases due to supply chain issues and volatility in fuel costs due to the ongoing war in Ukraine,” said Kevin Davis, Mayor for the City of Brantford. “However, despite these challenges, staff have prepared a budget that maintains current service levels, responds to growth-related pressures, and includes investments that will make a meaningful difference to residents’ quality of life. This budget supports core City services, responds to planned growth, and makes necessary investments to improve our community.”
Last month, Brantford City Council approved the City’s 2023 Capital Budget of $ 104,772,042 million, a majority of which focuses on initiatives that invest in neighbourhoods and recreation facilities, as well as asset renewal to continue the work required to advance previously approved multi-year projects, including affordable housing projects, transportation, water and wastewater infrastructure, and recreation.
Additional information regarding the City’s 2023 Operating and Capital Budgets is available at brantford.ca/CityBudget.