Town’s finances red flagged

Local questions the town's recent level of debt after accounting firm's presentation.

At last week’s council committee meeting the Town’s professional and independent accounting firm red flagged the state of the Town’s finances.

During a presentation on the much delayed and overdue 2011 Financial Statement the accounting firm raised serious concerns regarding the high level of the Town’s debt, its lack of reserves and its significant increase in spending.

Each one in its own right is a serious condition but to have all three major concerns cited in a public meeting is a very rare event and serves as a wake-up call for the entire community.

The debt and spending levels have increased significantly over the past four years and this is creating an unsustainable burden for the taxpayers.

At the same time the Town has drawn down its reserves and has not put into effect adequate plans to replace them.

All three of these items will hinder the Town’s ability to fund priority infrastructure projects or respond to emergency situations. The Town has over borrowed and over spent.  Without a change in direction we will soon face a severe financial crisis.  Now is the time to put a stop to these expensive and non sustainable practices.

In the up- coming byelection you have an opportunity to vote for candidates who don’t want spend money, borrowed or otherwise on non–priority projects like Bridge to Bridge or on a Transportation system that was inefficient, lacked riders and was rated as one of the more costly and least effective in the entire province.

Support and cast your ballots in the up-coming byelection for candidates who believe in living within our means, stand for fiscal responsibility and who will put the interests of the taxpayers and overall community ahead of those of special interest groups and fad spending trends.

We need mature, rational and responsible leaders who understand business, the importance of curtailing all unnecessary spending and restoring the Town’s finances. The Town’s professional and independent accounting firm has issued the warning. If we disregard it the long term costs will be enormous and very damaging to all taxpayers and the entire community.

Yours truly

Bob Munro