Bracebridge Town Council has approved its 2015 Municipal Budget and Business Plan. The approved budget and plan focuses on assuring the financial sustainability of the community by effectively aligning all of the Town’s revenue sources with its long-term operating and capital requirements.

It will be financed by a combination of property taxes, user fees and other revenues, like grants and dividends from Lakeland Holdings Ltd. The approved budget will result in a lower-tier general property tax rate increase of 2.1% for residential property owners or roughly $8 per $100,000 of property tax assessment.

“I am pleased with the adoption of the 2015 Budget and Business Plan, as it continues to address the capital requirements of our community while remaining fiscally responsible to our residents,” said Mayor Graydon Smith.

The approved budget and Business Plan includes funding for:

• Over $2.1 million in work to be completed as part of the Town’s roads and sidewalk rehabilitation program.

• Acquisition of land for the construction of a new main Fire Station for the Bracebridge Fire Department.

• Initial design work for the new main Fire Station in anticipation of construction starting in 2016.

• Replacement of a Fire Rescue Vehicle for the Bracebridge Fire Department.

• Accessibility and customer-service related renovations at Town Hall.

• Development of a new, multi-functional municipal website to enhance access to information and services.

• Installation of new sports field lighting for Gostick Park to expand opportunities to utilize the fields.

• Maintenance and rehabilitation of the infield portion of the ball diamonds at Peake Fields at Verena Acres.

• Enhanced Winter Control activities to alleviate the impact of inclement weather conditions over the winter months.

• $55,000 for Year 2 of a 7-year pledge to the South Muskoka Hospital Foundation to assist with capital requirements.

• Additional allocation to the Town’s Major Infrastructure reserve.

“The Town remains acutely aware of the need to be diligent in addressing its competing infrastructure demands. The 2015 Municipal Budget and Business Plan directs needed funding toward the Town’s core infrastructure while maintaining consistent levels of service,” adds Smith.