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Making Macdonald pedestrian-friendly

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The RM of Macdonald’s 2014 budget includes $150,000 earmarked for improving walkways and paths throughout the RM’s communities.

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The RM of Macdonald’s 2014 budget includes $150,000 earmarked for improving walkways and paths throughout the RM’s communities. Photo Store

Growing residential development in the RM of Macdonald is fuelling the need for more services and recreational facilities.

Acting reeve Doug Dobrowolski said $150,000 of the municipality’s $19.4 million 2014 budget is being spent on improving walkways and paths in all the communities.

Over half or $10.3 million of the total revenues and expenses for 2014 are school taxes collected and remitted by the municipality.

The largest project starting this year is a $3 million extension of water pipes from the Sanford water treatment plant to Oak Bluff, and improvements to the Oak Bluff reservoir, to meet the increasing residential and commercial development occurring in Oak Bluff. The municipality’s share of the project cost is $1.5 million, with the provincial government paying the other half.

"We’re in the design stage now,"

Dobrowolski said. He expects work to begin in the late summer or early fall.

Municipal tax collected accounts for just over 31 per cent of revenue or about $6 million.

The municipality’s 2014 expenses include $3.4 million for fiscal services such as capital and debt charges, allowance for taxable assets and reserve contributions. Transportation services account for over 12 per cent, or $2.3 million, with road maintenance listed as the largest expense in this category at $1.7 million, followed by equipment fuel, maintenance and insurance costs ($653,100) and public work wages ($629,477).

The municipality is part of five school divisions so the school taxes levied vary according to property location. The general municipal mill rate decreased as compared to the 2013 rate.


Comparing property tax bills

According to information from the RM of Macdonald:


A residential property in Kingswood, La Salle and the Seine River School Division assessed at $661,200 in 2013 would have paid a total of $8,109.39. In 2014, the same property assessed at $808,100 would pay $9,305.92. This increase of 14.8 per cent includes a levy for the new LSCU Centre.


A residential property in Oak Bluff and the Red River Valley School Division assessed at $287,300 in 2013 would have paid a total of $3,596.34. In 2014, the same property assessed at $322,000 would pay $3,614.47 or .5 per cent more.


A commercial property in Oak Bluff and the Red River Valley School Division assessed at $538,000 in 2013 would have paid a total of $13,866.59. In 2014, the same property assessed at $554,100 would pay $13,085.28 — a decrease of 5.6 per cent.


A farm property in Township 7 in the Brunkild area and the Red River Valley School Division assessed at $223,200 in 2013 would have paid a total of $1,622.81. In 2014, the same property assessed at $288,000 would pay $1,876.12 — an increase of 15.6 per cent.

Note: The school tax on commercial property is a combination of both the local school tax levy and the Provincial Education Tax levy. Residential property and farmland are only subject to the local school tax levy.


— Geary

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