Some budget trimming has brought some relief for Victoria taxpayers.
Instead of the 3.5-per-cent property tax increase planned for, city council approved a reduction to a 3.25-per-cent hike.
The reduction is due to some cost-cutting measures.
First, council members agreed to eliminate their catered lunches for meetings that run overtime, for a savings of $12,000. Then last week, they approved additional cuts to contracted services ($30,000) and the administrative police budget ($150,000).
The city was also pleasantly surprised by a $68,000 drop in the Greater Victoria Public Libraries’ funding request.
In total, the items save taxpayers $260,000.
“I’m deliriously happy,” said Coun. Marianne Alto, whose first attempt to convince her colleagues to make the cuts failed. “Do I think we could cut more? Yes I do.”
Council also signalled to staff that it wants future tax increases to be no higher than 3.25 per cent.