The Town of Bonnyville’s 2023 budget was first presented to counsellors in October and the open house where the public could ask questions took place on the 6th.
Council needs to pass an interim budget before the last day of the year. Before the budget is finalised council can make alterations until the property tax bylaw gets finalised as well.
The initial deficit for the first draft is $721,034.
Bonnyville’s Mayor Elisa Brosseau says administration was given some high-priority areas to focus on with the budget.
“With this council, we have been doing strategic planning and from that, we have some high priorities or areas of focus that we want administration to focus not only their time but the budget on.”
Mayor Brosseau says anything to do with economic development, downtown revitalization, and beautification was considered a high priority. Recreation and wellness were two other topics the council made high-priority.
“Anything that enhances the community.”
While the budget has seen the surface for the first time it has not been finalized and Mayor Brosseau expresses that it’s hard to say if something has made the budget or has been left behind.
“It’s hard to say that something did not make it into the budget that will not be there in the future. That is part of the whole process. We are going to deliberate on some of these items that we might want to have more focus on that maybe are just not there yet.”
Mayor Brosseau says one of the examples is the lights along the trail. She says the council could take a second look and find a place in the budget for the project. If members of the public would like to express their voices on what should be prioritized Mayor Brosseau says the council is always open to Bonnyville’s voice.
“We are always interested to hear what the residents think. It is important for us to know the residents are happy with how we are operating the town and where we are focusing the budget on.”
Mayor Brosseau says it is impossible to make everyone happy but the council will try its best to make Bonnyville the best place it can be.