Your Muskoka tax bill could be going up as officials prepare for the future.

An increase of 1.3 per cent is being suggested, which is an extra $12 on the district portion of a tax bill for a $300,000 Muskoka home. This doesn’t include municipal taxes. Commissioner of Finance and Corporate Julie Stevens says nearly four dollars of that increase is going into capital reserves to prepare for upcoming costs. Stevens says overall this would put about $25 million into the road reserves. The estimated cost of road projects over the next ten years is over $170 million. Stevens says putting more money aside helps pay for projects like this in the future.

Another budget driver is the OPP policing costs for Muskoka this year which is just over $15.4 million. In 2017, the district budgeted just over $15 million for policing costs.

Stevens says the total budget proposed for 2018 is just over $73 million, which is $1.7 million more than last year.

Standing committees responsible for each of the district departments will be reviewing their portions of the proposed budget next week. Here is a list of each meeting being held in the District of Muskoka Bracebridge office:

  • Engineering and Public Works, January 17th at 9am
  • Community Services, January 17th at 1:30pm
  • Planning and Development, January 18th at 9am
  • Corporate and Emergency Services, January 18th at 1pm

After each of these committees has had a chance to review their departments’ budgets, the entire proposal will be reviewed by district council on January 31st at 9am. Muskoka residents will be allowed to speak at any of these meetings with comments or concerns about the proposed budget. If you want to make a formal presentation you’ll need to contact the District Clerk Debbie Crowder by emailing debbie.crowder@muskoka.on.ca at least two days before the meeting.

You can view the entire proposed 2018 Muskoka budget here.