Cumberland County holds the line on taxes

Darrell Cole
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Residential, commercial rates same as last year

Cumberland County's property taxes are remaining the same as last year.

Cumberland County's property taxes are remaining the same as last year.

UPPER NAPPAN – The Municipality of Cumberland is holding the line on its tax rates for both residential and commercial property owners.

The municipality brought down its 2014-15 budget during its regular meeting on Wednesday, approving a residential tax rate of $1.04 per $100 taxable assessment and a $2.63 per $100 taxable assessment for commercial properties.

“It’s a very positive budget for us in that once again we are able to hold the line on property taxes,” Warden Keith Hunter said following the meeting. “It’s a very good budget in that we have a capital budget of more than $7 million that will see a number of new fire facilities built as well as extending the water system to Maccan.”

The resource/forest rate is 25 cents per $100 assessment for less than 50,000 acres and 40 cents per $100 for more than 50,000 acres, while the village rates in Pugwash (30 cents residential, 37 cents commercial) are staying the same. River Hebert’s village rate is dropping to 50 cents per $100 from 75.

The county’s total budget this year is $17.4 million, representing a one per cent increase over 2013-14 and is based on a 3.2 per cent increase in its taxable assessment across the county.

Hunter said the capital budget is one of the county’s most aggressive with $437,000 be set aside to complete renovations to the E.D. Fullerton Municipal Building, $2 million for Maccan water and $1.79 million for new fire protection facilities in Tidnish, Collingwood and Wallace.

The county will also spend $175,000 to convert its streetlights to LED and will spend $1.29 million on energy office projects and geothermal studies.

Funding for the capital budget will come from general revenue ($1.1 million), reserves ($2.04 million), gas tax reserves ($2.9 million), infrastructure funding ($866,000) and capital charges ($268,226).

In other budget decisions, the uniform sewer rate remains at $360 per unit, the Joggins extension remains at $480 per unit, Athol Road sewer remains at $224 per unit, street light rates are staying the same and the Oxford School Enhancement remains at 5.1 cents per $100 assessment.

The county’s director of finance, Andrew MacDonald, said residential taxes are expected to climb by $363,225 over last year, while the commercial tax is expected to be $75,211 higher and the resource tax levy will be $14,898 higher.

Payments in lieu from Nova Scotia Power and Bell Aliant are expected to be $22,000 less while grants in lieu from the province and federal government will jump by $6,000.

The general government budget is decreasing by $3,896 and protective services is expected to be down by $42,994 – although the RCMP budget has increased by $101,741 and bylaw enforcement is up $52,937.

Fire protection is expected to decrease by $167,431.

Transportation is up $669, environmental health is up $159,366 mainly because of an increase in the solid waste budget while the environmental development budget will increase by $36,958 and recreation and culture will decrease by $37,328.

The mandatory education contribution is up 4.2 per cent to $3.6 million.

Twitter: @ADNdarrell

Organizations: E.D. Fullerton Municipal Building, Oxford School Enhancement, Nova Scotia Power Bell Aliant RCMP

Geographic location: Cumberland County, Maccan, Pugwash River Hebert Tidnish Joggins Athol Road

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Recent comments

  • more of the same
    May 15, 2014 - 12:35

    The Springhill Financial Disaster will impact the County going forward . I understand they have costly environment clean ups on property the town owns that have been ignoring for years waiting for someone else to fix . Their staff , pensions etc etc will now be the responsibility of the County . There is a meeting tonight there to advise all the bad news ....Not a pretty picture ..

  • Silas
    May 14, 2014 - 17:38

    Wait till next year and see if there is an increase to help pay the massive Springhill debt. Me thinks there will be some "unhappy" campers.

  • Colin Martin
    May 14, 2014 - 16:20

    Sounds like sound management at all levels. Hope, in time Springhill and the County will be able to share services and make the necessary improvements for all.