Grande Prairie City Council has unanimously approved the 2020 municipal operating budget.
The approval brings with it a 1.25 per cent residential property tax increase in 2020, which represents an average increase of roughly $37.87 each next year.
After asking administration staff to find efficiencies with minimal impact on services, councillors found around $6 million in savings, adjustments and funding cuts.
The adjustments include $500,000 from Grande Prairie Transit, which impacts the amount of service available to residents and riders. The cuts will reduce evening hours for several routes, including pick up and drop off from gathering spots like the Prairie Mall and Grande Prairie Regional College.
Savings also include changes to the budgets for services including the RCMP, Grande Prairie Fire Department, and Bylaw Enforcement Services which total around $1.1 million.
Council also moved $480,000 in funding from Alberta Law Enforcement Response Teams, re-allocating it to the local RCMP detachment. The money represents the salaries of approximately three officers from the ALERT unit.
ALERT brings together multiple Canadian law enforcement organizations under one umbrella. Its work includes fighting gang activity, working against drug trafficking, and confronting domestic violence.