UPDATE: More spending added, committee approves 2014 budget

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Cornwall city hall

CORNWALL, Ontario - The city's budget steering committee added another $55,000 in spending this year before putting the final touches to the document that will take more out of your pocket.

The committee decided to add another full-time person at the Cornwall landfill to help run the facility at a cost of $55,000.

That move comes on top of $500,000 the committee approved earlier this week for additional road repair work in Cornwall - which means the average residential taxpayer in the city will fork over about $20 more this year.

The next move will be to approve the budget at a special council meeting that will be called in the weeks ahead. It's likely the budget will pass with the increases because a majority of councillors have already indicated they support it.

A member of a taxpayer group that opposes spending increases in Cornwall said the move is hardly surprising, given the track record of city council.

Roy Perkins said that while council has kept a pledge it made when elected to keep tax levy increases from jumping by more than eight percentage points over the last four years, taxpayers expect better.

"That's a success, in a way," Perkins said. "But zero is the target, the only target."

Budget proponents have suggested the extra $20 being sought by city hall on the average residential tax bill is offset by a couple of factors, including a desire to mitigate infrastructure repair costs by paying them now, and also that the increase represents less than 50 cents a week.

"But surely to god we could enjoy a $20 reduction," said Perkins.

Geographic location: Ontario

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