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County councillors set 2023 budget parameters

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County of Grande Prairie staff now has a bit of a roadmap when it comes to preliminary discussions over the upcoming 2023 budget.

As part of a recent Committee of the Whole Meeting, council has asked administration to start looking at what the budget will look like if they maintain current service levels, make no changes to property tax rates, and count for the cost of inflation.

County of Grande Prairie Reeve Leanne Beaupre says it gives each department opportunities to consider as they move forward through the preliminary budget work.

“That gives them basically the starting point, then they can start to look at what our finances will look like, revenues vs expenditures for the last year, also forecast what some of those increases could be due to inflation and supply chain issues,” she adds.

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Not surprisingly, Beaupre says an expected big ticket item will be transportation infrastructure, with the 2022 budget seeing 70 percent or roughly $23 million earmarked for capital projects.

“The number one ask all the time is improvement to roads and bridges, and we have a pretty good plan that identifies roads that either need to be rehabilitated, potentially meet the criteria for hard surfacing, or rebuild,” she says.

“We continue to work off of that plan, but there’s always something from year to year that maybe wasn’t necessarily planned for in the long-term plan but has become a more immediate need, so we will be looking at some of that.”

2023 Budget Business Case presentations are scheduled for November 21st and 22nd, with interim budget deliberations taking place December 7th-9th, 2022.

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