Taxes are going up in Morinville.
 
Council finalized the 2019 budget, which included a tax hike of four per cent. They also introduced a split, non-residential rate for commercial industrial assessments, which will increase by a factor of 1.1 over their residential rate. Their goal is to have that number increase to 1.5 over a five year period.
 
"Council and admin have worked really hard to arrive at a budget with Morinville's long-term sustainability at heart and really tried to minimize the impact on local taxpayers," said mayor Barry Turner.
 
Turner expects the average taxpayer will see an increase of about $80-$90 per year.
 
The 2019 budget reflects council's goal to eliminate their annual operating deficit. Currently, they are running a deficit of about $776,000.
 
The final municipal tax rate will be approved in the spring through the passing of the Property Tax Bylaw.
 
Some of the major projects affecting the budget include the opening of the new Morinville community recreation facility, work on the fire department parking lot, road and and sidewalk rehabilitation, extending the solar lights on the walking trails and development on the city's website.
 
"We're really excited about that and that's part of what the 2019 budget is going to bring for us."
 
Utility rates will see changes due to a new storm water utility. While it used to be covered under general taxation, council added it to utilities for 2019. Residential customers are expected to see a $5 change and commercial customers a $10 change.
 
Last year Morinville saw a tax increase of just under one per cent.

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