April 14, 2022
By Mike Riley
Journalist of the Local Journalism Initiative
At their April 6 meeting, Faraday Township Council received its draft 2022 budget from Dawn Switzer, the clerk and treasurer. After a brief discussion and council’s gratitude to Switzer and staff for a job well done, it was revealed that the township will see a 1.98% increase in tax levy this year.
Switzer presented the draft 2022 budget to the board at its April 6 meeting. Overall, the board felt the budget was reasonable and saw nothing wrong with it, commending Switzer and his staff for their efforts and a job well done.
Overall, the budgeted expenses for 2022 were $6,403,231, which is $1,774,808.20 more than the actual 2021 amount of $3,874,121.80, due to township insurance, Environmental Services Waste Commission Expenses, COVID-19 Expenses, Requisition of Police Services, Gravel Resurfacing, Road Construction on Monck Road and Leachate Management Contract ( liquid generated by precipitation and the natural decomposition of waste). There were also planned expenses for the township backhoe, truck no. 3 and grader no. 1, which, according to Switzer, are positions that are estimated at the beginning of the year.
“They include all expenses including fuel/gas, regular maintenance, repairs and insurance. Unfortunately, we can only estimate due to constantly changing fuel/petrol prices, insurance and unscheduled repairs,” she says.
Revenue for 2022 was budgeted at $3,640,047, which is $1,654,955.70 more than the actual total in 2021 of $1,322,458.30, due to more provincial grants and rebates, municipal program management of hazardous or special waste, building permits, sale of land, sale of surplus equipment and others. For more information and to view the 2022 draft budget, you can request it by contacting Switzer at [email protected].
Councilor Murray Bowers thought that, given what they planned to do and what they were accomplishing, it was a good budget.
“All of these things are necessary and we happen to be able to do them, which is a good thing. There are a lot of people around cutting the budget and backtracking on things. We seem to be moving forward. So thank you Scott and Dawn for steering the ship the way it is. Well done,” he said.
Switzer’s report on the 2022 draft budget looked at capital projects that needed to be completed, including; updating the council chamber (new offices, paint and flooring using COVID-19 funding from the province), implementing all recommended renovations to the fire halls as outlined in the feasibility study and fire energy audit and the purchase of a fire department/tanker pumper (which she notes was previously accounted for in the 2021 budget, so they are using $200,000 from the fuel reserve). fire). There are also several road projects to be completed in 2022 which include; Lower Faraday Road (part of the $100,000 expenses covered by the Ontario Community Infrastructure Fund), Monck Road at a cost of $170,000 (part of which will be covered by the Monck Road Reserve), Old Hastings Road Bridge (a project previously counted in last year’s budget, so they’re using $170,000 from the capital reserve), Sand Salt Storage Shed (a project previously counted in 2020 and 2021’s budget, they’re using so $350,000 from the capital reserve), Trout Lake Road, Airport Road, the purchase of ¾ ton pickup trucks, one of which was previously accounted for in the 2021 budget, so they’re using $80,000 from the reserve capital, and the other is due to the age of the vehicle, which is a 2016 Dodge, and the ongoing expenses for repairs.
“To keep the levy at a responsible increase, we designated using $70,000 from the capital reserve [for the 2016 Dodge pickup]“, she said in her report.
A litter feasibility study and permanent fencing is required at the landfill along the treeline to prevent windblown litter from entering the forest.
Regarding insurance for the township, Switzer says that in conversation with other townships, some of them have seen an increase of 50% or more in the last year. In 2021, Faraday saw an 18% increase, and she says she hopes the increase this year will not exceed the 20% forecast.
While the township had received a number of donation requests, Switzer said she had not allocated money for those requests.
Overall, Switzer said staff continue to add to the township’s reserves totaling $460,000.
“The cantonal part of the fee will be an increase of 1.98%. Currently we do not have a county levy. According to the province, there will be no change in school board levies for 2022,” she said. “After completing the proposed budget, I have calculated that the township has $7,679,445.05 in reserves.” When working on the proposed budget, the board and staff take into perspective ways to continue to be effective and efficient in delivering services and operations without a significant increase for our ratepayers.