Budget 2022: Our Community, Our Future

Chatham-Kent's Municipal budget is the blueprint for how your tax dollars will be spent.

It shows how the Municipality will balance revenue with expenditures to fund services it effectively and efficiently provides to the residents of Chatham-Kent.

This fall, we have released the first phase of budget engagement through a survey.

The second phase is the budget presentation live on YourTV January 12th. The draft budget is available at https://budget.chatham-kent.ca/2022. We’ll also be hosting live Q&A Community Open House sessions on Facebook January 19th (12pm) and 20th (7pm)

The third phase will involve Council deliberations on the budget, which will be aired live on YourTV, as well as shared on Facebook and YouTube, starting January 26th (6pm).

Interested in speaking to Council regarding the budget? Submit your letter to ckfps@chatham-kent.ca and it will be read during the Council budget deliberation.

Use the interactive section below to submit your budget questions and share your ideas regarding the Municipal Budget 2022.

Chatham-Kent's Municipal budget is the blueprint for how your tax dollars will be spent.

It shows how the Municipality will balance revenue with expenditures to fund services it effectively and efficiently provides to the residents of Chatham-Kent.

This fall, we have released the first phase of budget engagement through a survey.

The second phase is the budget presentation live on YourTV January 12th. The draft budget is available at https://budget.chatham-kent.ca/2022. We’ll also be hosting live Q&A Community Open House sessions on Facebook January 19th (12pm) and 20th (7pm)

The third phase will involve Council deliberations on the budget, which will be aired live on YourTV, as well as shared on Facebook and YouTube, starting January 26th (6pm).

Interested in speaking to Council regarding the budget? Submit your letter to ckfps@chatham-kent.ca and it will be read during the Council budget deliberation.

Use the interactive section below to submit your budget questions and share your ideas regarding the Municipal Budget 2022.

Budget Question Submission

Do you have a question about the 2022 budget or budget process? Enter your question below and someone from the budget team will answer.

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  • I have a few. - What percent of the budget is for wages. - What percent of the budget is for the tax payers contribution to the municipal employees pension plan. - What has been the average wage increase for municipal employees for the last 5 years,

    Kevin asked 7 days ago
    1. Percentage of budget attributed to employee wages only = 32.5% 
    2. Percentage of budget attributed to employer contributions to employee pension plan (OMERS) = 2.9%
    3. Average increase in wages over last five years (2015 – 2020) = 1.6% five year range does not include 2021 due to the number of unsettled contracts.
  • Why doesn't the municipality charge new builders to run the new sewer lines? And why not make new bulids keep a % for affordable housing units?

    Steven C asked 8 days ago

    Developers who construct new subdivisions or other developments are required to pay for and install new infrastructure, including sewers, that solely benefit their own developments.  Municipalities are required to pay for larger growth-related items such as major sewer trunk mains, treatment plants, equipment in parks and major arterial roads, for example.  The CK Public Utilities Commission (PUC), currently has a set development charge that is paid at the time of building permit to help offset some of the future costs related to water and wastewater infrastructure.  Currently, a total development charge of $5,343 for water and wastewater is required for a new single detached dwelling.  The Municipality is currently undertaking a Development Charge Study to review the possibility of additional charges for other eligible services to help offset future infrastructure costs.

     

    There currently is no legislative authority to require developers to build a certain percentage of affordable housing units.  A few years ago the Provincial Government did introduce new legislation called “Inclusionary Zoning”, which essentially allows for this, but it currently can only be applied to certain defined areas within the Greater Toronto Area.

  • Are the historical tax rates published anywhere or could we be provided with the tax rates that have been applied in the past?

    cmercer asked 8 days ago

    Below is the link to the tax rates. 

    https://www.chatham-kent.ca/services/propertytaxes/Pages/Tax-Rates-and-Due-Dates.aspx

    There is a large variation in tax rates across the province.  As you can see in this small sample there is generally an inverse correlation between property values and the tax rate.  Calculating the tax rate is simply a math exercise of taking Council’s approved budget and allocating it across the assessment roll based on our Council approved Tax Policy.

     

    Please see the 2021 Budget Facts sheet under the Useful Information section on our Let's Talk 2022 Budget page or use the link below. It shows the tax increase history.

     https://www.letstalkchatham-kent.ca/26213/widgets/112753/documents/73273

  • A previous resident asked why Chatham-Kent had a high tax rate relative to the provincial average. The response indicated that a higher tax rate was required to levy a property tax ($3,262) that was near the provincial average ($3,613) given the lower property values in Chatham-Kent. Such a response seems reasonable at face-value because a Chatham-Kent resident is receiving average municipal services for a slightly less tax burden than the average Ontarian. However, the municipal response ignores a key variable when understanding overall tax burden - household income. Chatham-Kent has a very low median household income ($58,125 - Statistics Canada 2016) relative to the Ontario median household income ($74,287). Thus, the property tax burden on a Chatham-Kent resident is higher relative to income ($3,262 / $54,125 = 0.0561) than the average household in Ontario ($3,613 / $74,287 = 0.0486). More plainly, Chatham-Kent residents experience a greater property tax burden in their pocket books than your average Ontarian. Recognizing that Chatham-Kent has unique challenges, what is councils long-term strategy to get the income adjusted tax burden for Chatham-Kent residents more in-line with the Ontario average so folks can have more money to inject into the local economy?

    anonymous asked 10 days ago

    The cost of Municipal services is fundamentally the same regardless of location and is more closely correlated with geographic size, i.e. km’s of roads, number of bridges etc. As the following slide shows, Chatham-Kent has a disproportionate amount of Ontario’s infrastructure which is costly to maintain, and this is exacerbated by a low population as shown by our population density. Unfortunately the tax burden of a community is not related to the average income of it’s residents, and understanding the impact this has on our residents, administration and Council work hard to provide the necessary services as efficiently as possible.

  • Good day: Thank you for taking on the onerous task of budget deliberations. My question Is: Why do only dog owners pay for a license from Chatham-Kent? I believe cat owners, (and perhaps other pet owners) should also be paying a fee for ownership to support the services (such as Paws) paid for by the municipality. Either that or the municipality should stop charging dog owners with a license fee. It is not equitable that of all pet owners, it is only dog owners who pay a fee. I understand that there is a voluntary fee for cat owners. Who "voluntarily" pays a tax? Please do the right thing and change this archaic law. Thanks Mike

    Mike1 asked 13 days ago

    Dog owners are required to licence their dogs under the Responsible Animal Ownership By-law. Pet and Wildlife Rescue (PAWR) has been contracted by the Municipality to provide animal control and shelter services, for all 6 wards, at a cost of $813,835 for 2021. The fees collected from dog licensing (10,085 tags) in 2021 was $317,000. The licence fees collected from dog tags offsets 39% of the total contract costs for animal control and shelter services. The balance of the costs for this service is funded by the general tax base - by all taxpayers.

     

    Under PAWR’s contract they are responsible to house and care for the shelter animals at two shelter locations (Chatham and Wallaceburg) in Chatham-Kent. A few of the many services PAWR provide under their contract with the Municipality are:

    • Enforce Responsible Animal Ownership By-law
    • Respond to animal control calls ie. dog bites, dog at large, 
    • Attend/commence court proceedings
    • Provide emergency services ie. picking up animals at fire, accident
    • Shelter Services – operate and manage two shelters
    • Adoption services
    • Kennel inspections
    • Providing veterinarian services to animals that may require
    • Employ staff including 4 animal control officers
    • Provide and maintain vehicles for animal control purposes
    • Enforcing prohibited animals 
    • Cat intake

     

    Most of the time spent by PAWR providing animal control services is for dogs at large, unlicensed dogs, dog bites, dog excrement and attending court proceedings related to dog matters. 

     

    In 2015, when the Responsible Animal Ownership By-law was passed consideration was given to licensing cats. At that time a limit on the number of cats per household was introduced.  If cats were to be regulated further it would come with increased costs. In 2007, the Manager of Licensing Services estimated that cost to regulate cats at $400,000.00.  It would cost a lot more today. 

  • The single most frustrating thing about living in CK is the nonstop increase of our Residential taxes we pay the highest tax rate in all of Ontario (or just about the highest). Will this council set the NEW standard in 2022 and focus on a 0% tax increase for all residents in chatham kent?

    couture_cory asked 21 days ago

    Thank you for your input into the 2022 budget and your comment for Council. To provide a bit of context around the first part of your comment please see the attached two slides from the 2022 Budget opening night presentation. This data is taken from the 2021 BMA study which covers Municipalities across all of Ontario. The first slide looks at an average residential home, a 1,200 sq. ft. bungalow, and compares the tax burden in Chatham-Kent with the Provincial average. As you can see, for the same average house with the same average Municipal services, the home in Chatham-Kent incurs a lower tax cost, but because the MPAC assessment of that house is lower than the Provincial average, the rate required to calculate that tax amount has to be higher. The second slide shows the tax burden for that average house against a selection of our comparators and Chatham-Kent falls below both the selection average and the full BMA survey average.

  • What input can CK residents have on the budget? Is there a tool available to help indicate which areas are of higher priority to residents?

    asked about 1 month ago

    CK residents can provide input on the budget through a few avenues:

    • Through the Let Talk webpage under the Budget 2022: Our Community, Our Future project page. Questions and ideas can be submitted through this project page. Please see link below. 

                       https://www.letstalkchatham-kent.ca/budget2022

    • Through the Budget Survey - the 2022 Budget Survey had already taken place from September 1, 2021 to November 26, 2021. 
    • Through live Q&A Community Open House sessions on Facebook on January 19th at 12pm and January 20th at 7pm
    • Deputations relating to the 2022 Budget can be submitted to ckfps@chatham-kent.ca and it will be read during the Council budget deliberation. Budget deliberations start January 26th at 6pm.
  • When a budget cut is deemed necessary, what is the first area to be cut?

    asked about 1 month ago

    Every year departments will review their areas and budgets to identify possible efficiencies and savings that can be made while maintaining current levels of service. This ensures they keep costs under control and keeps enforced cuts to a minimum. On top of this, departments are continuously reviewing the level of service provided to ensure that it still meets the level of expectation from our residents and still provides value for money. If it is determined that a service level is too high, no longer needed, or is not value for money, administration will bring a recommendation to Council with regards to a cut in service and the corresponding budget savings.

  • Where can we find a print document of the current Municipal budget? Is a budget to actual comparison available?

    asked about 1 month ago

    The current Municipal budget can be found following the link below. It is the 2021 Approved Budget.

    https://www.chatham-kent.ca/localgovernment/budget/Pages/Our-Municipal-Budgets.aspx 

    The latest budget to actual comparison is the May Variance that went to Council on July 12, 2021. Please see the link below to the Council meeting minutes for that night. The Report to Council for the May Variance was item number 17.c. There is a link to a copy of the report within.

    https://pub-chatham-kent.escribemeetings.com/Meeting.aspx?Id=080772c1-a9b1-4c36-9ffb-3f6560ef3937&Agenda=PostMinutes&lang=English&Item=44&Tab=attachments

  • Are these questions going to be made public with the answers??

    Cowgirl asked about 2 months ago

    Yes, the questions and answers will be posted publicly. 

Page last updated: 25 January 2022, 14:43