Feb 12, 2023
The Regional District of East Kootenay (RDEK) Board of Directors has adopted its 2023-2027 Financial Plan.
The 2023 operating budget totals $41,050,352, which results in an increase of $30 on an average $536,000 residential assessment across the region. “It is important to understand that there is a difference between the numbers in the budget and the effect those numbers will have on individual tax rates. The RDEK offers over 100 different services, and residents will be affected differently, depending on the municipality or electoral area in which they live,” says RDEK Board Chair Rob Gay.
The operating budget includes a 2% increase for the HR Implementation Plan and a 3% increase in the building reserve fund, both of which were approved by the RDEK Board in 2022, and a 4.3% increase for operational and inflationary changes.
“Unlike a municipality that has one boundary and one set of taxpayers, different areas of the RDEK require different services and these are paid for only by the taxpayers of each specific service area,” explains Gay. “While it is tempting to look at increases in terms of percentages, that doesn’t tell the true story. You need to understand what services you receive and what that translates to in order to have the full picture of how the budget will impact you. For example, residents in the City of Cranbrook will see a 4.3% increase in their requisition for the RDEK which works out to $10 on the average $536,000 residential assessment. Residents of Area B, will see a 5.6% increase overall in their requisition and a $21 increase on a $536,000 residential assessment because they receive different services.”
To help summarize some of the impacts, the RDEK has prepared a Snapshot, which includes the Financial Plan’s impacts on the electoral areas and municipalities along with capital budget highlights. The Snapshot of the adopted Five Year Plan, along with the full adopted plan and some other resources will be posted early next week on [url=https://engage.rdek.bc.ca/budget]https://engage.rdek.bc.ca/budget[/url].
Tax calculations are expected to be complete by early-April when 2023 revised assessed values are available.
The total 2023 capital budget is just over $17 million and includes the Fairmont Flood & Debris Control Cold Spring Creek upgrades (98.5% grant funded), a new transfer station in Radium Hot Springs, the construction of a new composting facility in each of the RDEK’s three subregions, a new fire hall for Hosmer (100% funded), and three projects on the East Side Water system.
Other highlights include $85,000 for a proposed Community Development Coordinator position that will be based out of the City of Cranbrook and focus on homelessness, and $15,000 for the East Kootenay Divisions of Family Practice for physician recruitment.
In addition to the information available online at engage.rdek.bc.ca/budget, copies of the Financial Plan and snapshot are also available on request through the RDEK’s Columbia Valley and Cranbrook offices.