MONTRÉAL, Jan. 10, 2018 /CNW Telbec/ - The mayor of Montréal, Ms. Valérie Plante, as well as the chair of the executive committee responsible for finance, Mr. Benoit Dorais, have presented the highlights of the city's 2018 budget.
"This budget marks the start of the transition towards the vision we proposed to Montrealers, with a special focus on mobility, housing and local services to citizens. Despite the limited budget with which we were working, our choices and budget orientations speak to our commitment to develop our city with rigour and pragmatism and make citizens our top priority," said Mayor Valérie Plante.
"The 2018 budget, focused on housing, mobility and economic development, comes in at $5,472.2M. The increase in tax charges under city council jurisdiction is limited to 1.9% for residential property and 2.1% for the non-residential sector. This average variation reflects responsible fiscal practices and is meant to support services to Montrealers," said Mr. Dorais.
Additional credits of $11.7M will be transferred to the 19 boroughs so that each can continue to fully assume its responsibilities by offering quality local services to residents. The administration has thus indexed their transfers by 1%.
Sustainable mobility and public safety
Sustainable mobility and the safety of the public in transit are top priorities of our municipal administration. The 2018 budget includes a $27.7M increase in the municipal contribution to the new Autorité régionale de transport métropolitain (ARTM).
Assistance to businesses
In an effort to lend a hand to merchants whose businesses are located in or near work sites, the administration is currently developing a strategy that will mitigate the impact of construction sites and work operations carried out by the city. Measures will be put in place in 2018. Funding methods and specific measures related to the business assistance program will be announced at a subsequent date.
Access to property and clean housing for Montréal families will be a priority for our administration. We're taking measures to improve housing cleanliness with a 30-member inspection team, thanks to an additional investment of $1M, as well as the homeownership assistance program, which will account for an annual investment of $21M.
A total of $163.3M is earmarked for the snow removal budget, an increase of $6M compared to 2017. This increase will help make operations even more effective, and it includes additional credits of $1.5M sidewalk salting.
Culture, sports and physical activities
Because culture is a core priority for our administration, we're increasing the Conseil des arts budget by $2.5M. Sports and physical activity are also central to our administration's preoccupation with the wellbeing and health of the city's population. In 2018, $1M will be invested in contributions to sports organizations, with $450,000 earmarked for the sports events program, and $85,000 destined for the outdoor activities cited in the Water Plan. As far as sports facilities are concerned, $575,500 will be given in financial contributions to non-profit organizations in order to improve the services they offer to the public.
Montréal's waterworks and sewer networks are aging. It is thus imperative that we continue to invest in water infrastructures so as to ensure that they are repaired and upgraded. As well, Montréal must take appropriate measures to meet the requirements of the Stratégie québécoise d'économie d'eau potable. To offset the major deficit in water infrastructure investments, this year's total tax charges include an increase in water tax, namely of 1.1% for residential properties and 0.8% for non-residential properties.
SOURCE Ville de Montréal - Cabinet de la mairesse et du comité exécutif
For further information: Geneviève Jutras, Press attaché to the mayor, Office of the Mayor and Executive Committee, 514 243-1268; Youssef Amane, Press attaché for the executive committee, Office of the Mayor and Executive Commitee, 438-832-1221; Gonzalo Nunez, Public Relations Office, Service des communications, 514 868-1127