NIAGARA FALLS, ON - Today, Niagara Falls City Council approved the 2021 Operating Budget with a gross expenditure of $128,482,661, equaling a net tax levy increase of 1.7 per cent.
Many residents in our community face continued financial hardships due to the pandemic and Council was determined that the budget remain affordable, while ensuring the ability to maintain the essential services residents and businesses depend on every day. Council was able to reach a compromise that will allow the City to provide the services our citizens expect, without sacrificing the future to do so.
The budget limits the municipal tax increase to 1.7%, amounting to an extra $23.75 annual increase for the average residential household ($279,854). The actual tax bill for each property owner will depend on the assessed value of the property. These estimates also reflect the City’s portion of taxes only – a property owner’s tax bill also includes school taxes, and impacts from Region of Niagara services, including waste management.
The increase compares favourable with average household and commercial taxes, and tax increases, in other Niagara municipalities.
Council approved the recommended budget changes and the other mitigation options outlined in the presentation by Finance Director Tiffany Clark, as well as the overall annual operating budget increase of $23.75 to the average residential household for 2021.
Council also redefined the Ontario Lottery & Gaming (OLG) priorities to exclude property tax relief and committed to a strategy of reducing the OLG tax subsidy by 50% of the new taxation growth per year beginning in 2022 with those funds to be converted to future capital investments.
The service level decision regarding the indoor aquatics centre at MacBain Community Centre was deferred until such time as staff has had an opportunity to review the results of the expressions of interest and report back to Council in March.
All final budget documents will be available at niagarafalls.ca/budget
For more information, contact:
Director of Finance, City of Niagara Falls