Finally 2500 names on a petition, taxpayers standing up all over the
is making a difference. Crowsnest Pass
One of the most controversial methods of picking the tax payers pockets next year was going to be a $336,000 increase to the amount of Franchise Fees that we the residents of the Crowsnest Pass have no choice to pay unless you can live without Gas or Power. Even when the Municipality presented their “Fact Sheet” at an approximate cost of $10,000 in the local media back in November, they had the Franchise Fees rising from 20% to 35% for gas and from 14% to 20% for power. This on top of the fact that the revenue being generated by these Franchise Fees had already jumped from $295,000 in 2010 to $570,000 in 2012, the further increases would have taken that number to $907,000 next year.
To my shock the “Facts” have changed up on opening the local paper last night, I see that the Municipality is now advertising the Franchise Fees are only increasing from 20% to 25% for gas and from 14% to 16% for power. This means instead of the Franchise Fee Revenue jumping from $295,000 in 2010 to $907,000 in 2013 it will only jump to $682,000 next year an increase of 231% in three years instead of the 308% previously proposed. I know we should not be dancing in the streets over this but it is a partial victory in that $225,000 less will be taken out of our pockets next year.
On top of that at last week’s G+P meeting the
clarified that there will be, has the Mayor stated in his last newsletter a
$500,000 savings in the Fire Departments. This savings will come about by them
not taking that money and purchasing the much-discussed Quint Ladder Truck. Now
I know some people may look at this skeptically and think games are being
played with numbers here, somebody said to me yesterday so if I propose to buy
a $150,000 Hummer that I don’t need then I come to my senses and back off on
buying it did I really save $150,000?
Two things here first of all Council/administration are going to look heroes here with the 2012 budget, $250,000 not spent on the Quint this year, $600,000 not spent on demolishing the Crowsnest Centre and all the savings they have incurred by not filling various positions in a timely fashion. (We will talk about this more in a future post)
Second, do I think this would have happened without the petition without people finally speaking up? Not a chance.
You would almost think Municipal Affairs was coming in to do an investigation!