As part of Talktober, the city’s effort to get out and talk to residents, it has launched a new interactive budget simulator to let local residents express their preferences with respect to budget allocations across various city functions.
“We encourage residents to provide feedback on how they want us to spend their tax dollars,” said Mayor Lyn Hall, in a press release. “As council continues to focus on community engagement and transparency as one of its strategic priorities, this public consultation process is about residents helping us to shape the 2016 budget, the 2016 Corporate Plan, and the priorities of council.”
The Talktober budget tool, called Citizen Budget, allows residents to use their individual property assessments to see how much they currently pay monthly for a variety of municipal services (i.e. community programs and events, facilities, parks and trails, public library services, planning, protective services, and more).
By using the interactive calculator in Citizen Budget, they can increase, decrease, or maintain service levels in each area and immediately see what impact it has on their monthly personal tax payments.
When they are satisfied with their budget choices, residents can submit their feedback and share it on a variety of social networks. The results will be collected over the next month and inform Council on how residents feel about how their tax dollars are being spent.
The tool is now live on the city website and can be accessed directly at princegeorge.citizenbudget.com.
Members of council and staff will be showcasing this new tool at the upcoming Talktober
• October 1 (Thursday) East Bowl (includes the Crescents, Millar Addition, VLA, Seymour/Harwin, and Downtown neighbourhoods)- South Fort George Family Resource Centre
• October 7 (Wednesday) Blackburn – Blackburn Community Hall
• October 14 (Wednesday ) Vanway/Beaverly/Haldi – Vanway Elementary School
• October 21 (Wednesday) College Heights (includes the UNBC area) – Columbus Community
• October 28 (Wednesday) West Bowl (includes Heritage, Spruceland, Lakewood, Otway,
Westwood, Van Bien, Pinecone, Pinewood, Highglen, and Foothills neighbourhoods) – Kinsmen