Saanich has once again launched an online budgeting tool to allow residents to see how their property tax is used and to provide feedback on its draft financial plan. (Black Press Media file photo)

Saanich has once again launched an online budgeting tool to allow residents to see how their property tax is used and to provide feedback on its draft financial plan. (Black Press Media file photo)

Saanich residents can see how their property taxes are used with online tool

Residents can also offer feedback on Saanich’s 2021-2025 draft financial plan

Ahead of confirming its new financial plan, Saanich released an online tool that helps residents understand where municipal spending goes and how their property taxes contribute.

Using the pre-set property value of $940,300, 63.8 per cent ($2,924) of property tax goes to municipal operations. The remainder is divided between the school district, Capital Regional District, hospital district, BC Transit, BCAA and the Municipal Finance Authority.

Of the 63.8 per cent going to municipal operations, taxes are then divided into eight primary sections: support services, engineering and public works, capital services, library, grants and economic development, planning and development, fire and emergency program, parks, recreation and community services, and police services. The bulk goes to police services (25.7 per cent), followed by capital services (17.3 per cent) and fire and emergency program (14.5 per cent).

The municipal breakdown of property taxes on a residence valued at $940,300, using the Saanich budget education tool. (Saanich budget education tool/Screenshot)

The budget tool then allows residents to see how changes to their municipal property taxes would effect funding in the draft 2021-2025 financial plan and gives them an opportunity to submit their thoughts. Residents are also encouraged to share their thoughts by emailing or mailing in input or attending one of the remaining budget meetings being held until mid-April.

The draft financial plan, meeting dates and budget tool can be found at saanich.ca. Council must adopt the financial plan and tax rate bylaws by May 15.

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