by Colin Smith
Utility costs will go up $73.49 per year for the average Morinville homeowner if rate bylaws given second reading by Town Council at its November 12 regular meeting come into effect.
Water rates will rise by $17.09, sanitary sewer by $21.30, solid waste by $5.70 and stormwater by $30.
The average household will pay $1,588.71 in utility costs next year, up from $1,514.63 in 2019.
The utility bylaws need to pass third reading by Council before becoming law.
The water rate hike reflects a 3.2% increase in the price for water supplied by EPCOR in 2020, and the Town’s contractor for waste and disposal is also raising rates.
A proposed increase in sanitary sewer rates was initially based on a 4.35 increase in Alberta Capital Region Wastewater Commission prices, but these will rise by 6.9% instead.
The sanitary sewer rate change was one of three updates to the 2020 Budget given first reading October 22 that was presented to Council by Administration.
Impacts on taxes
The Alberta School Fund Foundation Requisition for 2019 has come in at 3% rather than 2%, and adjustments made will show up in 2020 tax notices. For 2020, requisition amounts will be frozen based on the 2019 amount.
As a result, there will be savings of $17.30 within residential assessments, $58.23 for commercial and $105.15 for industrial.
An annual reduction in the Municipal Sustainability Initiative grant and the Basic Municipal Transportation Grant expected to begin in 2022 is actually going to kick in in 2021.
The amount of the reduction is not yet known but has been budgeted at 30%, amounting to $429,481 per year, which has typically been put toward fleet-replacement, the annual road, and sidewalk program and other capital investments.
Council was scheduled to debate Second Reading of the 2020 Budget, which at first reading called for a 3% residential property tax increase next year, along with a 12% rise for businesses.