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Topic: Property taxes to go up
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Joy

12/31/2011 3:00:04 PM
Member since:
Feb 2010
Total posts:85
I

live downtown and never received a letter.

Johnbisonbear

12/31/2011 3:58:48 PM
Member since:
Mar 2010
Total posts:1318
bloated bureaucracy

  
kerry auriat said "I don't think this is much of an issue. The reality is that the negotiating position the unions will take is obvious -- you've already budgeted for 4% -- so hand it over. the overall salary increases and new hirings are simply more than we can afford.  
We need to keep calling and emailing our councillors. This budget is too high! "

Kerry, yes it is about the new hires, for example why does a small city like us need a director of communications, Stephen Harper has one and he has to deal with all of Canada plus the rest of the world! I wonder how much the director is making. That lawyer that the city hired for policy analyst will not be cheap!  
 
Did you happen to see how much more money was going for IT department, I mean do we really need to see the columbarium installed at the cemetary. Not everyone in Brandon is wired up!

peace/strength

12/31/2011 4:46:31 PM
Member since:
May 2011
Total posts:50
raising taxes

Is it true it will be 15-20%, that's alot for Brandon. How about the people who are on fixed income, will hurt the most, when they worked hard for their money. How about inflation, it's going up already. Does the mayor want no one to live in Brandon, because it will get to the point, where your taxes, will be more than your mortage payments. Also, I would like someone to explain to me about all the services that Brandon offers, that one of the reasons, are taxes have to up, to keep our services, in Brandon. You are kidding me. They can do other cuts in Brandon, but not jobs, how about what's important and not. Maybe raise the taxes half of that and think of other cuts,a little harder.

Johnbisonbear

12/31/2011 10:33:24 PM
Member since:
Mar 2010
Total posts:1318
Im worried about our future with this mayor at helm

Just had a look at manitobanet, have a look a SDH comment about double digit tax increase is an investment for the future. What a bunch of bs. It is her vision for the future and we taxpayers cannot afford this. Perhaps she shoudnt have hired so many new directors, managers etc., high paying positions that the city cannot afford. We have too many professionals working in this city and I dont know why these new positions werent  
given more thought. You always have to look at the bottom linr brfore you hire new staff, how many businesses have learned this the hard way

Humphrey

1/1/2012 4:03:25 AM
Member since:
Apr 2010
Total posts:581
B.S. is right!

  
Johnbisonbear said "Just had a look at manitobanet, have a look a SDH comment about double digit tax increase is an investment for the future. What a bunch of bs. It is her vision for the future and we taxpayers cannot afford this. Perhaps she shoudnt have hired so many new directors, managers etc., high paying positions that the city cannot afford. We have too many professionals working in this city and I dont know why these new positions werent  
given more thought. You always have to look at the bottom linr brfore you hire new staff, how many businesses have learned this the hard way "

I could not agree more. What I am curious of is the ability of these managers to effectively do their jobs (both new and old employees).  
 
What I would like to see is a skill assessment performed on all City department managers as well as a performance review by an unbiased party (including the input of all employees affected). As we are essentially paying their salaries through our tax dollars, I would like to be comforted by the knowledge that these individuals are capable of performing their tasks as well as efficiently running their departments.  
 
What I would MOST like to see is that respectful workplace is being followed and that bullying is not occuring.

grandmaB

1/1/2012 2:22:53 PM
Member since:
Jan 2012
Total posts:108
Newbie in Brandon

We have moved to Brandon awhile back, built a new home and chose Brandon as the place to retire,we were constantly getting tax bills mailed to our previous location, well...we are now regretting our choice of cities! Had we known that all this BS was happening we would of chose another place to live. If this keeps up with the raising of more taxes, gas and food, we will have no choice but to sell and move elsewhere. My husband and I have worked long and hard for our money and deserve to live a decent life on a fixed income but if city council keeps up with their dreams of $$$$$$ that most people can't afford then they will be looking at people leaving Brandon period!!! I'm trying to understand how people in this city can afford to live on the wages that they are receiving which is minimum wage and to afford the housing that is so ridiculously high here as well. I had read on a previous post that there is an elderly 70 yr. guy on city council posted that the elderly should be getting jobs if they feel they cannot afford the taxes...what the hell r u thinking, r u an idiot or just plain stupid!!! I for one will not look for a job as my health is not as it was when I did work...and for the fact no elderly person should have to work when they have retired...it is their right to live out their last part of their golden years to spend as much time as they can with their loved ones period!!!! If you want to work that is your choice but do not sit there and preach to the rest of the retired elderly people you ignoramus!

Mello_yellow_jello

1/1/2012 6:28:57 PM
Member since:
Aug 2009
Total posts:74
2012 Human Resources Budget - Labour relations increases 19,952 %

I find it interesting that this " transparent city council" wants to blame this outrageous increase on unresolved union contract negotiations.The fact of the matter being that the cities largest union being CUPE #69 settled for 2% in their first year and it probably accounts for approx 50% of the city staff. I do not know what the remaining 3 years of their contract calls for but I am confident predicting less than 15 % in each of these remaining years. Any CUPE #69 members feel free to fill in the blanks. I would also be quite surprised to see the Transit, Police, Fire, and E911 being offfered 15% in each year of their contract settlements. However I have heard that city council did vote departmant managers "wage readjustments " ranging from $17,000 to $30,000 per year.This ,to me ,appears to fall into an approximate 20% to 30% increase for city department managers. Then I read the 2012 budget for the " Human Resources Dept "and see an increase of 19,953 % for labour relations. If these managers are so good at what they do to be rewarded to the tune of an additional $17-30,000.00 per year , why do they need to pay out an addition $140,000 next year for outsiders to assist with labour relations ? You decide which groups of employees at city hall will be absorbing the largest portion of your future tax increases,unionized employees or department managers and outside consultants ??

Johnbisonbear

1/1/2012 7:07:42 PM
Member since:
Mar 2010
Total posts:1318
elderly man

  
grandmaB said "We have moved to Brandon awhile back, built a new home and chose Brandon as the place to retire,we were constantly getting tax bills mailed to our previous location, well...we are now regretting our choice of cities! Had we known that all this BS was happening we would of chose another place to live. If this keeps up with the raising of more taxes, gas and food, we will have no choice but to sell and move elsewhere. My husband and I have worked long and hard for our money and deserve to live a decent life on a fixed income but if city council keeps up with their dreams of $$$$$$ that most people can't afford then they will be looking at people leaving Brandon period!!! I'm trying to understand how people in this city can afford to live on the wages that they are receiving which is minimum wage and to afford the housing that is so ridiculously high here as well. I had read on a previous post that there is an elderly 70 yr. guy on city council posted that the elderly should be getting jobs if they feel they cannot afford the taxes...what the hell r u thinking, r u an idiot or just plain stupid!!! I for one will not look for a job as my health is not as it was when I did work...and for the fact no elderly person should have to work when they have retired...it is their right to live out their last part of their golden years to spend as much time as they can with their loved ones period!!!! If you want to work that is your choice but do not sit there and preach to the rest of the retired elderly people you ignoramus! "

any one can watch the city council meeting on the internet to find that said man is not elderly but around 60. I think that his comment about seniors getting a part time job to pay their taxes should be known to all. He should offer an apology for such a condescending comment!

kerry auriat

1/1/2012 8:20:08 PM
Member since:
Nov 2007
Total posts:523
Murray blight

I understand he was the councilor who made the comment aout retirees finding work to help pay for things. I'm not sure. Can anyone confirm?

Pile Driver

1/1/2012 9:45:41 PM
Member since:
Dec 2011
Total posts:182
Yup

  
kerry auriat said "I understand he was the councilor who made the comment aout retirees finding work to help pay for things. I'm not sure. Can anyone confirm? "

I was watching on TV. He said it.

RonHart

1/1/2012 10:20:34 PM
Member since:
Nov 2011
Total posts:510
city

need to cut taxes buy cutting out snow removal, lawn mowing,shut down all the rinks pools and water parks golf courses and anything city owned that is there for entertainment.This is all a waste of tax money.Another big tax drain is all the call outs to the city police from the bars. Might be time to put a drinking bylaw in to close bars at midnight to cut down on police staff from the over serving of booze.Also the city need to bill the places that needed saved from the flood instead of the making the rest of us pay for them building in a flood plain.

kerry auriat

1/2/2012 10:48:35 AM
Member since:
Nov 2007
Total posts:523
Ron Hart

Ron: people who bought and built on the flood plain paid their taxes and bought land approved by the city for building. The reality of the situation is that these home and business owners are entitled to all of the services our city can provide.  
I think we need to start asking ourselves if we can afford all of the people and services, and wages, that our council seems to think we can.  

fargobob

1/2/2012 11:41:01 AM
Member since:
Nov 2005
Total posts:3186
Murray Blight

I think Murray's words, although maybe not the best choice of words, are being taken somewhat out of context.  
 
His words were "I am a retired person. I do extra work to compensate" His very next words were "I sympathize with seniors."  
 
Although he didn't say other seniors should get a job to compensate for, or offset the raise in taxes, I can see how his words could be taken as such. I haven't spoken to Murray about his words, but more than anything I think he was witnessed taking stock of his own personal situation.  
 

ynot

1/2/2012 12:03:07 PM
Member since:
Feb 2008
Total posts:654
Coun. McCrae

-quote in today's Brandon Sun editorial:'budget cuts may well come at the expense of city services'.  
Unfortunately,councillors have happily gone along with the mayor's grandiose spending plans & pet projects without any thought of the cost.These need to be cut or deferred before basic services get trimmed again.The budget process has been backward for many years in this way resulting in the current infrastructure deficit here & elsewhere.  
Citizens need to see proper snow removal,street & sidewalk maintenance,weed control,etc.to be accepting of a tax increase.The long list of expensive projects & new hires cannot be done or paid for in one year.  
Back to the basics!

Rico

1/2/2012 12:17:55 PM
Member since:
Jun 2005
Total posts:3645
SDH will still get her hires

We will now get a "scrimp and save" from the councillors down to a tax raise of "only" 7 or 8%, but we'll be paying for all these new positions and higher wages for ever, tax and spend heaven baby.....  
Remember this when the next election arrives people...

fargobob

1/2/2012 12:26:54 PM
Member since:
Nov 2005
Total posts:3186
Budget

At the last council meeting it seemed to me that a number of councilors were satisfied that they had done a good job trimming the budget as far as possible. Both Murray Blight and Jim McCrae, by my interpretation of their words, would fall into that category.  
 
Other councilors, notably, Stephen Montague, Garth Rice and Shawn Berry didn't seem to think that enough yet had been done in an attempt to trim the budget. I believe these three councilors also did NOT vote for the budget as it now reads. The Saturday edition of the BS also shows there may be some other councilors ready / willing to take another look at ways to trim things. I believe this to be a direct result of hearing from their constituents, so if you have something to say and have yet to address your councilor, or the mayor, it may be in your best interest to do so.  
 
It's pretty clear to me that a lot of the spending in this budget is necessary. I think it may well be a difficult task to trim the budget in a way that doesn't impact services to some degree. When I see the breakdown of the budget my eye is drawn to the salary and wages portion. Understanding that the largest portion of our impending increase in taxes is going to wages and salaries, along with the fact that higher levels of government are looking at holding the line on wages, I believe this should be one of the first areas to look for possible cuts.  
 
There is no doubt in my mind that with our infrastructure deficit being as large as it is, next year at this time we will be looking at similar tax increase proposals. If ever there was a time in this city for fiscal responsibility, with what I see on the horizon, now is the time to work toward the most responsible spending and budgetary practices possible. If not, this will become a city, that for some of us, will no longer be affordable.

RonHart

1/2/2012 1:25:08 PM
Member since:
Nov 2011
Total posts:510
the budget

looks to me as they are shy on the equipment budget by $300000 and the rest is increases to get the employes fair wages compared to the rest of the province.Not sure what taxes are on a $250000 house but should be in that $4000 to $5000 dollar range

beefer39

1/2/2012 2:06:40 PM
Member since:
Aug 2006
Total posts:495
Please Expand

  
RonHart said "looks to me as they are shy on the equipment budget by $300000 and the rest is increases to get the employes fair wages compared to the rest of the province.Not sure what taxes are on a $250000 house but should be in that $4000 to $5000 dollar range "

Can you expand on the reference to the need to increase employee wages so that they are fair compared to the rest of the province?  
 
Also, what justifies $4000 to $5000 taxes on a average house ?

RonHart

1/2/2012 2:39:30 PM
Member since:
Nov 2011
Total posts:510
wages

for equipment operators is $25 for tandem truck driver,$30 to $35 for truck trailer,$28 for grader/loader just a joe boy wouls be $18 plus and $22 if you have a class 5. Good office staff is in that $15 to $18 and management would be in that $150000/year plus truck.You put an rrsp plan and full medical on top and your going to be with the rural area wages.$4000 is about a months wages and 10yrs ago taxes were $2000 and that was about a months wages.So what happened is that the taxes never went up to offset the the wage increases and now you get hit with one big bang because of that.Be glad it is what it is as Winnipeg is really going to get a good slap in the face after no having tax increases.

beefer39

1/2/2012 3:15:50 PM
Member since:
Aug 2006
Total posts:495
My perspective

  
RonHart said "for equipment operators is $25 for tandem truck driver,$30 to $35 for truck trailer,$28 for grader/loader just a joe boy wouls be $18 plus and $22 if you have a class 5. Good office staff is in that $15 to $18 and management would be in that $150000/year plus truck.You put an rrsp plan and full medical on top and your going to be with the rural area wages.$4000 is about a months wages and 10yrs ago taxes were $2000 and that was about a months wages.So what happened is that the taxes never went up to offset the the wage increases and now you get hit with one big bang because of that.Be glad it is what it is as Winnipeg is really going to get a good slap in the face after no having tax increases. "

In your experience, equipment operators in rural areas have a better compensation package including benefits and job security than those employed by the City of Brandon? I'd need some solid verifiable numbers before I'd bite on that one.  
 
If a "joe boy"as you call them, working for the City of Brandon, is making $22 an hour plus benefits because he's able to drive a car, it's a little easier to understand why the city's wage expense is so out of control.  
 
Maybe in your world wages have doubled in the last 10 years. For most people in the private sector, barring promotions, wages have not doubled in that time period.  
 
According to Stats Canada the inflation rate has stayed below 3% since 1992. At 3% it takes 24 years for prices to double.  
 
http://www.ic.gc.ca/eic/site/oca-bc.nsf/eng/ca02093.html  
 
Also, there is absolutely no correlation between your wages and your property tax bill. Income taxes are paid on your wages and property taxes are based on your assessment and mill rate. If someone has bought a house for $100000 25 years ago and it's now worth $250000, it has more to do with the reduction in interest rates and monthly payment affordability than anything. Having people having to consider giving up their homes in retirement, because the city is on a spending spree is a disgrace.  
 
Taxes have gone up in Brandon steadily, they have not been frozen like Winnipeg, so while taxpayers can probably stomach a fair increase there is no justification for a "slap in the face"  

kerry auriat

1/2/2012 6:14:57 PM
Member since:
Nov 2007
Total posts:523
Good thoughts, Beefer

I don't see why people feel this strange need to compare wages across the country. We are always boasting about being one of the top 10 cities in Canada. If this is true, why do we need to sell top wages as an attraction to bring people here?  
Are we losing firefighters, police, and bureaucrats to other cities? If not, then why do we care about comparables?  
We never seem to lack candidates for positions like city manager, treasurer, etc. in fact, isn't our new city planner coming from Scottsdale, Arizona?  
What can we afford? We can't afford a 15% budget hike that almost all salaries.

RonHart

1/2/2012 8:22:00 PM
Member since:
Nov 2011
Total posts:510
not sure

about stats can.Manitoba site shows that average wage in 91 was 500/week and in 2010 was 780/week. Looks like a wage increase of almost 57% and housing in my area have went from hauling them to the dump to 140000 which is more then 3% increase as I believe city house prices have increase highly as well.As far as wages go to keep good people you need to pay or you end up spending money training new people that end up trashing your equipment learning.  
No matter what council decides it will never please everyone.Everyone wants but nobody wants to pay including me.

leafsfan

1/2/2012 8:29:58 PM
Member since:
Apr 2010
Total posts:136
Frustrated

I have been reading this post now for awhile and could someone tell me why they call this budget an infastructure budget correct me if i am wrong on calling it that .I used the calculater that Adam provided to calculate my tax increase if this budget passes and i found out my taxes are only going to go to 19.87% are you kiddin me that is totally unacceptable and I cant wait until the school division ask for an unreal raise as well. SDH and company give your heads a shake and come up some kind of solution .I know my employer wont give me a raise like you are giving yourself ay city hall .I have a decent job but i would like to save a little for the future but the rate you are going you will put alot of brandonites in the poor house .Cant wait to see if we will be one of the top cities in canada to live in nexts years ratings .I highly doubt that will happen .looks like in a few years the voters will have a choice and remember SDH and company the people have long memories .One last thing just say no for once SDH when wages are being negotiated for the contracts that are expiring .

Edited by admin, 2012-01-02 20:41:22. Reason: Language

The quiet one

1/2/2012 9:33:40 PM
Member since:
Mar 2009
Total posts:713
I can't remember for sure...

But I think I remember hearing during the flood cupe workers got 2% not 15%

grabngearz

1/2/2012 9:57:54 PM
Member since:
Mar 2011
Total posts:50
The quiet one

Dont know about cupe but the province workers got 0% during the flood.

beefer39

1/2/2012 10:01:46 PM
Member since:
Aug 2006
Total posts:495
Your numbers are changing

  
RonHart said "about stats can.Manitoba site shows that average wage in 91 was 500/week and in 2010 was 780/week. Looks like a wage increase of almost 57% and housing in my area have went from hauling them to the dump to 140000 which is more then 3% increase as I believe city house prices have increase highly as well.As far as wages go to keep good people you need to pay or you end up spending money training new people that end up trashing your equipment learning.  
No matter what council decides it will never please everyone.Everyone wants but nobody wants to pay including me. "

In your previous post you stated that the monthly income rose from $2000 a month to $4000 a month, which is a 100 per cent increase over 10 years. Now it's 57 per cent over 20, which is slightly less than 3per cent per year. If your $780 weekly number is accurate, where does that put your $22 per hour "joe boy". It puts him at $880 per week. So a "joe boy" with a drivers license starts with the city and he's paid a $100 a week more per week than an average Manitoban. Again I can understand where the cities wage expense is out of control.  
 
The cost of houses is a function of interest rates and people's ability to pay monthly payments. The same payment that would float a $100000 house 10 years ago will now float a $170000 house, taxes aside. The payment that floated $200000 will now float $340000. Without the real value of the house changing we have seen a 70 per cent increase in selling prices based on the reduction in interest rates.  
 
This phenomenon is not isolated to Brandon Manitoba.  
 
The fact is we are entering in to a period of world wide financial instability. If the City of Brandon continues to spend like drunken sailors, the level of prosperity we enjoy today will be a dot in the rear view mirror

nowayjw

1/2/2012 10:26:42 PM
Member since:
Oct 2010
Total posts:55
Tax increase higher than you may think

Using the ebrandon tax increase estimator (http://www.ebrandon.ca/propertytax2012.aspx, it shows our tax bill (before anticipated School Division Hike) is going to be 27.2%, however that is based on taxes before the $700 grant. If I take the increase strictly on what I paid in real dollars in 2010, the actual out of pocket increase is 38%. From $1728 to $2388! That is $660 or $55 a month.  
We are on a fixed income!  
Where in the hell do I come up with an extra $55 a month when CPP increases will not equal that in a year, let alone a month.  
We do not have a cushy Police or government pension like a couple of councillors do!  
We (wife and I) had a 3 year budget laid out with 2% inflationary increases to current costs built in. As with all budgets, we spend within our means and cut when we don't have income as opposed to using the credit card. The $55 a month will be coming out of the food and drug expense along with cancellation of newspaper and charitable donations. That will give us $40 for the year to cover BSD increase. Hope it's no more than that.  
The 3 year plan has changed to a 1 year plan. Now looking to sell and move in 2013.

Cydd

1/2/2012 11:26:41 PM
Member since:
Sep 2008
Total posts:75
Question...

Has anyone contacted their councillor instead of writing on ebrandon and complaining about it? This is a great reason for an occupy city hall movement. I have contact my councillor.  
I also noticed that the city of Brandon facebook page has no negative commentary about the tax increase. The time is now to voice your concerns all over the place, on facebook, via emails and even right at city hall.  
 
Stop complaining and take action.  

nowayjw

1/2/2012 11:55:06 PM
Member since:
Oct 2010
Total posts:55
contacted councillor?

Yes I did. It was Montague. He agrees that this increase is too high! Had a good discussion with him. He is continuing the fight. As for facebook on city of brandon site, i just use facebook for socializing. If I have a complaint with the city, I call my councillor directly.  
Occupy City Hall? Hmmm....

leafsfan

1/3/2012 9:32:37 AM
Member since:
Apr 2010
Total posts:136
contacted councillor

I as well contacted our councillor and its they are saying 1 thing and then you read the paper and they are saying another, me personally am tired of getting smoke blown up my ()!!!And where else in this country wuill you see a city with a tax increase like this unfrickin real. .

 
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