Regina Mayor Michael Fougere was able to respond to the proposed city budget after it was tabled on Friday.
City administration is proposing a 4.7% mill rate increase, which includes one percent already approved and dedicated to road improvement.
Fougere said city council will work to lower the increase to make it more manageable for Regina residents.
“I commend the administration for putting this forward as a starting point for public discussion, but I do think our focus should be on trying to reduce the mill rate,” Fougere said. “It’s about affordability, it’s a balance between paying for services and the ability to pay for that as well.”
Fougere said the 3% rate increase in utilities will be necessary to cover the cost of running them.
“I think it’s prudent to have a three year plan, 3% each year for three years is lower than say Saskatoon, which I think could be as high as 9%, so we’re looking at ways to having it sustainable,” Fougere said. “We’re going to listen to what residents have to say as well, but we believe that one is certainly is affordable compared to what we’ve had in the past as well.”
Council will vote on the budget on December 10th.