Golden and Area A weigh in on shared services agreement

Weekly question: What are your thoughts about shared services between Area A and the Town of Golden?

Ron Oszust

As Chair of the Partnered Services Delivery Review Committee that has been meeting for the past 18 months I can say that while the Town and Area A have funding partnerships for a variety of services and facilities in the community, the Town is the owner of other recreational and cultural facilities within the Town that are not subject to a funding partnership. These facilities are managed and maintained by the Town; however, these facilities are used by many individuals and groups in the neighbouring rural area. We were focusing on four facilities: the Golden Municipal Swimming Pool, the Golden Civic Centre, the Golden and District Seniors’ Centre, and the Mount 7 Rec Plex. That is the referendum item before the rural Golden residents during this election.

We are one community – GOLDEN – whether you live in the municipality or in the rural area. In order to maintain our level of services and facilities we need to work together. This is a community of people that are willing to roll up their sleeves to get things done. We are also a community of people who “do” the right thing. It is only right that we all pay a share for the services and amenities that we enjoy. As a rural Golden resident, I will be voting yes on the Electoral Area A Core Facilities Funding Contribution Establishment Bylaw No. 5777, which will permit the regional district to make an annual funding contribution to the Town of Golden to cover 20 per cent of the net operating costs of the four core facilities, at a maximum annual taxation limit that is the greater of $125,000 or $0.1238 per $1,000 calculated on the net taxable value of land and improvements?” Please vote on October 20.

Karen Cathcart

The regional district works in partnership with the Town of Golden supporting many shared services within the Town boundary. These services include the airport, the museum, the arena, Kicking Horse Culture, and many others.

Supporting existing and any new services or facilities that promote the health and wellness of our residents through a shared services protocol means that we are as local government folks doing all we can to maintain these facilities and services so that our children and families can grow.

As you know on October 20 Area A residents will go to the election polls to vote on the proposed Core Facilities Funding Contribution bylaw that is asking Area A residents to support a 20 per cent cost contribution through their taxes to help support the operational cost of the Rec Plex, the pool, the seniors’ centre, and the Civic Centre.

What does this mean to you, the tax payer: Based on the 2018 budget figure of $94,000 the residential tax rate for Area A residents will be an increase of about $9.27 per $100,000 of your property assessment (land and improvements). The average residential assessment in Area A is currently $311,776, which would translate to an annual tax payment of $28.83.

Shared services are a necessary business model for local governments to undertake as it ensures our community services and facilities are maintained for the enjoyment and recreational benefit for all.

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