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Council Highlights from the February 8 and 11, 2021 meetings

Council Highlights

Council approves 2021 Budget and a 2.04% tax levy increase

Clarington Council has approved the 2021 Municipal Budget, which includes a 2.04 per cent increase on the Clarington portion of the tax levy. That's an increase of $31.01 per year for the average property.

The 2.04 per cent increase will be used to cover the day-to-day operating costs. For every $100 collected in your local taxes, approximately $20 is used to pay for winter road maintenance, parks repair, cemeteries, sidewalks and building maintenance. While more than $18 is used to cover the cost of fire services, and around $12 will go towards capital expenses, including maintaining needed infrastructure.

This year, approximately $8.3 million will be used to support Clarington's ongoing infrastructure investment. The majority of that money will go towards rural road repair, road replacement, sidewalk repair, and bridge rehabilitation. Clarington is also planning to upgrade the HVAC system in various buildings to improve ventilation, filtration and air circulation. The Municipality has budgeted more than $508,000 to pay for various improvements to our parks and sports fields. Clarington has earmarked funding to clean up a stormwater pond in Solina to reduce sediment buildup, reduce erosion, and ensure that the pond is working correctly. The Municipality is investing $245,000 to make accessibility improvements to various buildings to ensure that residents of all abilities can access and navigate the premises. Taking advantage of the current facility closures, Clarington is also making some much-needed repairs to our community facilities and pools to minimize any service disruptions to residents when these facilities can reopen to the public following all COVID-19 regulations.

Clarington 2021 Budget Highlights:

  • Maintain service levels;
  • Continued support for critical infrastructure;
  • Includes inflationary increases to cover the cost of services;
  • Cuts to overall operating expenses to reflect COVID-19 pandemic;
  • Includes a savings plan for future recreation needs.

For more details, read Clarington Draft Budget 2021.

Council is looking to eliminate Special Study Area 2

Council is looking to change the Official Plan as it relates to Special Study Area 2. This area includes all lands east of Highway 418 and north of Highway 401 outside all the urban boundaries and the Greenbelt in Clarington. In 2015, Council recommended that these high-quality agricultural lands be considered for review of the Greenbelt. The Greenbelt was put in place by the Province to protect agricultural and natural heritage landscapes. If lands under Special Area 2 were added into the Greenbelt, this would provide long-term protection from development. However, the Municipality has heard from property owners concerned about the potential restrictions imposed if these lands are included in the Greenbelt. Clarington Council now wants to eliminate the Special Study Area 2 and has directed staff to set up a Public Meeting on April 26, 2021.

Read the Council Memo on Special Study Area 2 for more information. 

The next council meeting is Monday, March 1, 2021


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