Expect to see a higher tax bill in 2022.

On Tuesday (Dec.14), Fort Saskatchewan city council approved the 2022 operating and capital budgets. The municipal operating budget includes a 2.78 per cent property tax increase and a total of $50.6-million in property tax revenue to be collected.

For the average residential property assessed at $376,000, a homeowner will see an approximate $59 increase in 2022 property taxes or $4.97 a month.

Revenue sources for the city's operating budget include property taxes, utility rates, fines, user fees, grants, and investment income to a proposed total of $80.9-million. 

The budget offers relatively the same service level while dealing with inflation, higher costs associated with staffing, and population growth. 

"Overall, I believe council did a good job delivering a reasonable budget," said mayor Gale Katchur. "We have delivered a zero-tax increase over the last consecutive years, and it has caught up with us. So this year, unfortunately, we had to increase the taxes slightly to deal with the inflation."

The proposed capital budget, priced at $21.5-million, includes modernizing the JRC and widening the Veteran's Way corridor. Katchur noted some changes could be coming to the capital budget when council meets to discuss their strategic plan. 

During the November budget deliberations, council heard presentations from all city departments, as well as the Fort Saskatchewan Public Library and the Heartland Housing Foundation. 

Fort Saskatchewan isn't the only municipality to raise property taxes in the new year. Strathcona County recently approved its 2022 budget, which calls for a 3.11 per cent tax increase. The Town of Redwater also saw a tax increase of 4.5 per cent built into its approved budget.