Director's Corner - Aimee Watson

March 2024 Director’s Report

Directors Report March 2024

1. Budget

2. Roads

Budget 2024

Numbers numbers everywhere! Lots of theories and perspectives, this report will give you, to the penny, what the draft 2024 tax requisition is for Area D.

I am happy to report we did get it down to below last years rate/thousand. Details are in the report including a comparison to other Regional Districts and other electoral areas in the RDCK.

My full report, all in one, will be on the addenda to the board agenda on Thursday.

First photo is the Area D rates from 2022 to 2024 with the cost per housed assessed at $250,000 to $850,000. Plus 3 of the highest expense defined services you can add on depending on where you live.

Second photo is rate/thousand by each electoral area in the RDCK, not including defined services.

Third photo is a comparison of rate/thousand in the RDKB but from 2022. Interestingly, getting the 2024 rate/thousand by electoral area in other Regional Districts must be requested.

The final numbers for the budget are in. The RDCK hosted 9 public meetings across the RDCK, as Chair I attended several including Kaslo and Area D late February. All presentations from the public meetings are available on the RDCK calendar, go to the day of the meeting and the link is there. For Kaslo and Area D:

https://www.rdck.ca/…/budget-public-information-session…

I am happy to report that since the first draft budget in January, I have been able to lower Area D’s total taxation (requisition) by 7%, or from a draft rate/thousand of $1.40/thousand to $1.32/thousand.

Overall, the reductions were:

Building inspection: reduced by $300,000 using building reserve to smooth out low permit revenue.

Central Resource: reduced by $200,000, closure of Kokanee recycling and a few other areas.

Kootenay Lake transit: reduced by $100,000 using capital reserve, normally we would not take from a capital reserve for operations but as our capital needs are lower than available reserves, we were comfortable pulling from those funds.

Kaslo and Area D Economic Development: reduced to $0 from the annual $20,000 requisition.

Kaslo and Area D Recreation: reduced by $30,000 with Area D grants for capital requests.

Kaslo and Area D Fire service: reduced by $25,000 with Area D grants for fire truck.

Lardeau Valley Mosquito service: reduced by $4000 with Area D grants for operations.

The final budget will be adopted this month’s board meeting, to see the most up to date financial plan and/or attend the board meeting:

https://www.rdck.ca/…/regular-open-board-meeting-14.html

For Area D tax summary:

I have prepared several charts that will provide the rate/thousand for full Area D services (17 in total) along with the additional defined services like library, fire and mosquito.

Defined services indicate that are not provided to all communities in Area D, so they are not included in the Area D summary but are below it.

For example, Pineridge residents would add the services of kaslo fire, library and mosquito services to the Area D rate/thousand to get their total.

Residents in Meadow Creek would not include the library or fire but would include Lardeau Valley mosquito rate/thousand.

The chart below shows the summary for all Area D services (17) then the addition of 2 defined services. The others are found in the financial plan, page 4 for Area D.

By using your assessment, you can calculate to the penny what your 2024 tax bill will be. I have included estimates for homes valued at $250,000 to $850,000.

It is important to note your tax bill includes other services not managed or set by the RDCK. Those are police, hospital, tax and provincial taxation.

See picture #1

To compare across the RDCK what all electoral area budget are, here is a summary of rate/thousand by electoral area in the RDCK:

See picture #2

Also, as residents are comparing Regional Districts, I included some notes of comparison. The financial plans for the RDEK and the RDKB do not include the rate/thousand by electoral area, so there are missing pieces of information. I was only able to locate the 2022 rate/thousand by electoral area for the RDKB from 2022.

I have requested the 2024 numbers.

Some quick stats:

Regional District East Kootenay

Population: 60,439

Size: 27,542 sq/m

Jurisdiction: 14, 6 electoral areas and 8 municipalities

Population density: 2.4 sq/km

Services: 100

Regional District Kootenay Boundary

Population: 31,497

Size: 8,200 sq/m

Jurisdiction: 13, 5 electoral areas and 8 municipalities

Population density: 4.7 sq/km

Services: 68

Regional District Central Kootenay

Population: 63,000

Size: 22,000 sq/km

Jurisdiction: 20, 11 electoral areas, 9 municipalities

Population density: 2.7 sq/km

Services: 200

See picture #3

Area D Roads

They are in a terrible state! I have never heard of so many safety related issues, going to Marblehead and beyond is limited to under 5/km an hour just to be sure the washboard does not throw you off the road. Further north, residents are faced with filling in the potholes themselves just to get home. Argenta/Johnson Landing Road remains the horrible washboard of this time of year but is further eroding due to the usual spring load restrictions not being in place. All the issues that were known between Chelsey at LINKs and I through Facebook and my email, were compiled into a list that our MLA took straight to the Minister of Transportation. The indication was that they will ensure all operational repairs are completed as soon as possible and that they would review why the load restrictions have not been put in place as they have been across the rest of the Central Kootenay region. I have also requested a public meeting hosted by the Ministry of Transportation and the MLA.

Please do keep your emails to the MLA and transportation representatives coming, these issues only increase with each passing year and I do sincerely hope that they are permanently remedied.

Those contacts are:

Kinnear, Greg MOTI:EX Greg.Kinnear@gov.bc.ca

Lewis, Kevin MOTI:EX Kevin.Lewis@gov.bc.ca

Anderson.MLA, Brittny Brittny.Anderson.MLA@leg.bc.ca

And please do copy me so I can stay caught up

awatson@rdck.bc.ca