Langford passes budget with tax decrease

Langford passed its 2011 budget Monday night, featuring the envy of other municipalities — a slight tax decrease.

Property taxes are 0.23 per cent lower for 2011 or about $2 for the average $421,000 home. Where an average property paid $897 in 2010, the same property will pay $895 this year, not including taxes from other government agencies.

A business in Langford pays 3.16 times as much tax as a residential property, which is unchanged from last year. Residential levies make up almost 60 per cent of City tax revenues and business brings in 39.5 per cent.

Langford has a $21 million capital budget this year and is dipping into its $5.5 million reserve fund to help pay for storm water detention projects, parking and landscaping for City Centre Park and street beautification.

The City is also launching a project to connect neighbourhoods with paved cycling and walking trails.

“Revenue built up over time is being used as it should, on capital projects,” said chief administrator Jim Bowden. “We are in good financial shape.”

Langford Mayor Stew Young thanked the province and the federal governments for the $8.9 million grant to build the bowling centre and ice rink Sportsplex, saving the City from delaying the project or raising taxes to fund it.

He also congratulated Langford staff for being frugal and creative and the development community for willing to take risks in tough economic times.

“This year feels really good compared to last year,” Young said, referencing last year’s uncharacteristic 3.65 per cent tax hike. “It seems the economy is leveling off.”



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