City working on budget with ID 349 still un-answered
Businesses approved for the program receive an incentive in the form of a municipal tax rebate after they enhance existing buildings, construct new buildings or additions or demolish existing buildings - File photo
The City of Cold Lake is hard at work on 2020 budget deliberations as uncertainty around funding still abounds. The city met last week to start hashing out their financial plan.
Mayor Craig Copeland says with ID-349 funding from the province still up in the air, his council is working to figure out what the budget could look like.
“We collect about $21 million a year from our residents and downtown commercial. We’re just trying to figure out now what will be the number from the Air Weapons Range.”
The city must pass a budget before the year is up by law. Copeland reckons his council has until about December 17th to know what monies will be coming from the province.
“We’re ready to go. Council can make some decisions. We’ve done some great preparations here.”
Last week Bonnyville – Cold Lake – St. Paul MLA Dave Hanson addressed some of Copeland’s ID-349 comments, calling them “negotiations through the media” and blamed the city’s finances on “a spending problem.”
The city itself sent out a release saying some of Hanson’s accusations were false.
Copeland says it sounds like a case of misinformation.
“Probably what happened was is the MLA was given some material that wasn’t accurate and, unfortunately, Cold Lake was tainted.”
Copeland says the city is still waiting on 2019 ID-349 funding that hasn’t arrived yet.