Council eyeing interim tax levy

As the town continues to work on its 2006 budget, council will vote tonight to both institute an interim tax levy and borrow money to meet current expenditures.
Implementing interim tax levies, which has become common practice each January, is permissible under the Municipal Act, 2001.
The interim tax levies are a means to secure revenue to keep operating while council determines the final tax rates in the 2006 budget.
As in previous years, the interim levy is equal to about half of the total amount of taxes property owners paid in 2005.
If the bylaw to provide the levy is passed tonight, interim tax bills will be prepared and sent out shortly. Fifty percent of the levy shall become due and payable on Feb. 28, with the balance due by March 31.
As is normal procedure at the beginning of the year before the budget is done, council also will vote tonight on a bylaw to authorize temporary borrowing as required until revenues are collected.
Just like last year, the agreement for 2006 is with the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce to borrow sums not to exceed $4 million.
Tonight’s council meeting is scheduled to start at 6:45 p.m. It will be preceded by the committee of the whole at 5:30, which will meet in-camera until 6 p.m.
Other business at tonight’s meeting includes:
•a break-open ticket licence application from the La Verendrye General Hospital Auxiliary at the Bonnie Blue from Jan. 15, 2006-July 15, 2006;
•a request from Mike Anderson, chair of the local Crime Stoppers, for a letter of release of liability regarding its recent donation of playground equipment to local parks;
•a request from Fort Frances “Meals on Wheels” for financial support of its program;
•a request from the Rainy River Valley Safety Coalition for financial support of its 2006 programs;
•a request from Teresa Hazel regarding financial support of a Women’s Health Symposium on May 13, 2006 (the requested support is in the form of the waiver of the rental fee for the Townshend Theatre);
•a memorandum from Jim Kibiuk, CEO of Fort Frances Network Services, regarding the Township of Atikokan’s amendment to its operating agreement with Norwest Mobility;
•a request from Lawrence A. Eustace regarding Abitibi-Consolidated’s applications for a zoning bylaw amendment and official plan amendment, and request for road closures;
•a bylaw to authorize an agreement with Hugh Dennis regarding the provision of consulting services;
•a bylaw to authorize the execution of an agreement for library funding with the Ontario Trillium Foundation;
•a bylaw to authorize the entering into of a government authorized requester agreement with the province of Ontario as represented by the Minister of Transportation; and
•a bylaw to establish the retention periods for documents and records of the Town of Fort Frances.