Cold Lake City Council says some leftover money from last year will be used to help balance their 2019 books. In a release on Friday, council says just over $500,000 in surplus money is going to go towards balancing the $52 million dollar plan this year.
The money became surplus after it wasn’t spent in 2018. The city says one reason for it not being spent was salaries that didn’t get paid out after jobs sat vacant for the year.
Tax rates will fluctuate as the mill rate and assessment values are calculated. Some homeowners may pay a little more this year, others may pay less. The city says it expects to take in over $20 million on property taxes alone for 2019.
“We know about many hardships in the community due to the economy and so council did not want to see an increase in taxes,” Mayor Craig Copeland said. “Using accumulated surplus means that the increase in taxes could be felt next year. We will either need additional revenue or we will have to look at reducing services in the City to balance the 2020 budget. These are difficult times and, if things do not turn around, we have some difficult decisions on the horizon.”
Property assessments were down about six percent across the board for this tax year. Tax notices should be in the mail this week.