Tax increase on the way


Residential property owners will be looking at a 1.13 percent tax increase this year, as outlined in a budget presentation at last night’s council meeting.

This means those who own a home assessed at $200,000 will pay $41.34 more on property taxes.

Coun. Douglas Judson and Mayor June Caul said the downloading of costs onto municipalities from the provincial government makes it increasingly difficult to get the budget approved without a noticeable tax increase.

Meanwhile, Manager of Operations and Facilities Travis Rob gave his first capital projects update for the 2019 construction season.

He said temporary traffic signals at the overpass will be up for about four weeks while they finish joint expansion work.

Traffic should resume as normal around the second week of June.

As well, during the meeting Coun. Andrew Hallikas expressed his concerns over Ontario Library Service North’s unionized staff being cut in half due to the provincial government’s cuts to the 2019 budget.

He called the cuts “draconian” and said it is a direct downloading of costs onto the municipality by the province.

Also at last night’s meeting, council:

•heard a presentation by Fort High students on the 2019 drain stencil program;

•approved a bylaw re: an extension agreement with Wasaw Enterprises for operation of concessions in the Memorial Sports Centre;

•approved a bylaw to regulate smoking in public places in the municipality;

•received a resignation letter from Roy Avis stating he’s resigning from the Economic Development Advisory Committee for health reasons;

•approved a request to proclaim May 2019 as “Community Living Month” within the Town of Fort Frances; and

•approved a proclamation request from Borderland Pride to proclaim June 2-9 as “Pride Week.”