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New draft budget well-received by council


translate to about $27 more for the average homeowner on his or her counties property tax bill. During a later interview, Ménard- Brault said the latest revisions will allow the counties to maintain existing services without KDYLQJWRHLWKHUFXWSURJUDPVRUOD\R൵VWD൵ “I think it’s an excellent budget,” said Ménard-Brault. She noted that the revised budget will also allow the UCPR to make good on its commitment to a contract with the Town of Hawkesbury to maintain fire dispatch call service for six of the UCPR’s member mu- nicipalities. The City of Clarence-Rockland has its own separate fire dispatch call service contract with the City of Ottawa. The revised budget will also allow the UCPR to participate in the Eastern Ontario Rural Network (EORN) cellular broadband project.The EORN cellular project goal is to eliminate the number of “dead zones” for cellular phone service in Eastern Ontario. The benefits include allowing cellphone users to call 911 anywhere in the region during emergencies, and also boost the re- gion’s potential even more for economic development as many businesses now rely on dependable cellphone connections with their employees and clients. The draft budget will come back before counties council for final review and a pos- sible approval vote during its November 22 regular session.

The United Counties of Prescott-Russell council may meet its budget deadline for 2018 with weeks to spare after all. “I am personally prepared to support this,” said warden Gary Barton during the Nov. 8 UCPR committee of the whole council session. Julie Ménard-Brault, director of finance for the counties (see photo), presented council with a five-page summary brief of the latest revisions to the 2018 preliminary budget report. The suggested reductions would cut an- other $300,000 approximately from the ex- pense side of the budget, bringing it down fromabout $43million to under $42million. It also reduces the original 5.4 per cent tax rate increase needed for the first draft of the budget to 2.7 per cent. Last month counties council asked ad- ministration to try to bring the tax rate in- crease for the budget down to 2.5 per cent, though mayors Pierre Leroux of Russell Township and Fernand Dicaire of Alfred- Plantagenet Township indicated they could accept a rate increase of 3.6 per cent if it meant helping the counties meet both cur- rent and future asset management needs after several past years of zero-per cent bud- get increases. The 2.7 per cent tax rate increase would

Julie Ménard-Brault, directrice des finances des Comtés unis de Prescott-Russell, a présenté le 8 novembre sa deuxième ébauche du budget de 2018. Cette nouvelle ébauche prévoit une augmentation de 2,7% du taux d’imposition plutôt que 5,4 %, tel que présenté dans l’ébauche de septembre. —photo d’archives

30 nov. et 1 er déc. à 19h Salle de spectacle Optimiste (Rockland) Billets : (613) 446-3692 |

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