After Public Input – Now come the hard decisions – Alternate title: Do you really want an 11% increase?

So over the weekend and today I’ve been going through the latest input from you, the public, about what you like and don’t like about the City, and what you feel needs to be done or not done.

If I thought before that that input would make my decision easier now I know for sure, it won’t. 🙂

You can see the results in Tuesday’s agenda here or click the image which shows some of the feedback from the public input session. Screen Shot 2016-02-22 at 1.22.13 PM

And here is what the public budget survey looks like:

Screen Shot 2016-02-22 at 1.29.26 PM

And finally I have an excel spreadsheet that is also in the agenda.  Unfortunately only 25 people came to the public input session but 348 people did respond to the survey.  Overall it certainly isn’t a representative survey, but it does give us some ideas.

As I went through the public input I jotted down what seemed to be the projects that got the most, or least support.  These are my notes… broken down in “Yes”… “Yes But” and “No”.  With a couple thoughts from the survey.

Screen Shot 2016-02-22 at 1.34.08 PM

If I match that to the Excel Spreadsheet, here is the result:

Screen Shot 2016-02-22 at 1.00.52 PM

Notice the top line number.  Ouch.

If I take away the pool and Canal Beach….

Screen Shot 2016-02-22 at 1.36.01 PM

Still a hefty hike.  But one thing is clear… if we match up the budget to the input we got, we will have a significant increase on our hands.

Without question, the items that had the strongest support were upgrades to the Beach and to start on the Pool.  Also public bottled water stations and the repairs to the pilings at Harbour Quay.  What didn’t get much support?  Reduction in Transit… increasing Bylaw services… or Fibre Optic installation.

What to do?  Well… one thing that really stood out for me in the online survey was the very strong support for Parks and Rec as well as increasing economic development.

I guess we will just have to figure it out, that’s why Council is here but Council definitely has a lot of food for thought and a lot of tough decisions to make.

 

1 thought on “After Public Input – Now come the hard decisions – Alternate title: Do you really want an 11% increase?”

  1. I can’t really read the small print on this, but I’m pretty sure the people responding to your survey didn’t connect the dots between wanting something and taxes going up. Or the respondents were renters, outside City limits, whatever. People in Port Alberni are taxed to the max already. Those at City Hall don’t seem to remember how many residents have lost their good paying jobs, or are retired, or two parents trying hard to get by while one has to work out of town to keep it together… I can’t say this strongly enough…..WE ARE TAXED TO THE MAX, ALREADY AND CANNOT PAY MORE TAXES. Do a survey, or check provincial stats to see how many local homeowners are retired and getting under $50,00 year. I know myself and others don’t get half that. With water bills, sewer bills, utility bills, MSP bills, the ever increasing food and transportation bills …..I estimate, from people I know, that over half of us are barely getting by month to month. Some Canadian surveys I’ve read recently support this. Please do not allow taxes to go up again. New high tech garbage trucks in a lower class community? Contracting with a recycling company where the homeowner pays for service but the contractor won’t take glass or plastic bags…..one of the biggest pollution problems in the world??? Water should be free…..no one owns it…..but we not only pay for it, our bills are ‘stepped’ so we pay even more? What do we get for our taxes in this country? A life of indebtitude. Getting to be like that old song: ” I own my soul to the company store” (but substitute government for company) It boggles my mind that the city would even consider charging people for composting pick up at a time when more and more people are gardening to offset the cost of groceries. (bought broccoli or tomatoes lately?) Compost is gold.
    Just sending you my thoughts, Chris, because you seem to be someone who listens.

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