Adelaide Metcalfe $8-million budget passed

Taxes are going up 2.54 percent after Adelaide Metcalfe council passed the $8-million budget.

The financial plan was presented at the last meeting in January. Passage was delayed to give the public and councillors a chance to give further input. Nobody took that opportunity, according to treasurer Johnny Pereira.

That 2.54 percent tax increase was brought down from 10 percent staff found ways to cut their budgets and using a bit of reserve money. More money was also put into reserves for future spending in an effort to avoid future loans and big tax increases.

The tax increase means for the average homeowner assessed at $290,000, that will be $51 more going to the Township this year. For the average farm assessed at $800,000, that will be $36 more.

The capital budget for this year is $1.845 million.

Splitting up the big $3-million Mullifarry Road rebuild over a few years means only $250,000 is being spent on it this year, with $2.75 million estimated for 2024 and 2025.

Other road work planned this year is resurfacing 5.5 kilometres of Langan Drive from Townsend Line to Sexton Road ($140,000), and resurfacing 7.3 kilometres of Walkers Drive from Melbourne Road to Thames Road ($182,500). The sidewalk extension on Kerwood Road to the park entrance will be $36,000 not spent last year.

The culvert replacement at Scotchmere Drive will cost $200,000.

Along with the $400,000 snowplow that was already budgeted with last year’s money, another $420,000 from this year is set to go towards replacing a 20-year-old grader.

Kerwood Park phase two improvements worth $144,000 that were budgeted last year will be done this year. Another $35,000 from this year is dedicated for fixing up the park barn.

The fire department is set to get $37,500 in new gear.

Transportation makes up 88 percent of this year’s capital costs.

There is another $70,000 budgeted for legal fees to deal with the Centre Road water and sewer servicing dispute with Strathroy-Caradoc now before the courts.

Total money in the bank when it comes to reserves for future costs will go up $616,482 from $7.87 million at the start of this year, to $8.49 million at the end of 2023.

The budget was passed unanimously with Coun. Mike Brodie not present.

Chris Gareau, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Middlesex Banner