Last night Rosetown Council voted on and approved their 2021 town budget. Despite capital expense plans, a projected decrease in revenue at recreation facilities, and a possible larger operating grant for Orange Memories, council was able to to pass a surplus budget without raising the mill rate or adjusting the local base taxes.

It is an assessment year and values of properties within town limits have changed. Administration is projecting that the town will collect around $50,000 more from residential taxes due to the changing value of homes. Administration is also projecting to collect less from commercial property taxes as assessments on these properties have decreased slightly.

"We're looking at about a $50,000 increase on taxes across the whole town," CAO Michele Schmidt explained in the meeting. "Some taxes may go up more than others, that's because everyone's house is assessed differently. On the commercial side, in 2020 we generated $1,170,993. Utilizing the same taxes, assessment has dropped, we'll see a reduction in collection of taxes around $109,000."

Rosetown is expecting to collect just over $3.1 million from the general municipal levy in 2021.

For the most part the 2021 town budget reads like the 2020 budget with minor adjustments made for inflation and the odd shifting priority in certain departments. The most noticeable adjustments can been seen in projected revenue for recreation facilities. Revenue from these operations were impacted by the pandemic in 2020, and administration has appropriately tempered what it expects to see in 2021. Projected revenues from the rink concession, rink rentals, hockey rentals, and even the R.M.A.A's rink fees are all expected to be much lower in 2021. Administration has also budgeted for a significant reduction in rent at the civic centre.

In all council is looking at a small operating surplus in 2021. When combined with amortization, the some $2 million worth of planned capital projects, and transfers to and from reserves, Rosetown is looking at a final surplus of $51,668 for 2021. A significant increase over the projected budget from 2020.