I feel compelled to comment on statements reported in the article, Seguin debt free in June.
Seguin borrowed in 2002 to pay for its share of the new health centre contribution and the new state of the art solid waste management system. It was more cost effective to pay up front than paying the imbedded interest rate in the health centre levy, so council naturally took the lower cost option and borrowed to save our ratepayers money.
To describe this as “spending up 141 percent with the majority of that in-house discretionary spending “ is political spin at its finest!
The 2003 Seguin council reduced the tax rate by about 25 per cent in one year to reflect the assessment increase mandated by the province, so the tax rate reduction of 29 per cent over nine years should be viewed in this context.
Municipalities are prohibited from budgeting for deficits under the Municipal Act, so I am mystified by the statement, “The turning point from years of budget deficits to surpluses was the 2004 budget.”
I believe the council of the day made the right decision to choose to support the new health centre and a first class facility rebuild at Belvedere for our aged or infirm over a Lake Rosseau Islander upset over his inability to support his lifestyle .
Council certainly deserves credit for keeping tax rates reasonable in Seguin, but not for cheap political shots and continued misrepresentation of necessary contributions by former councils to the benefit of our local community.
Previous councils had the vision to see the creation of Seguin would create a strong economic unit. They saw the benefit of a 10-year plan for providing and paying for needed area and local services. The current council did not drop in from outer space and solve the area’s problems, but are rather continuing on trying to do the best for the ratepayers from their point of view.
Perhaps acknowledging previous council’s good planning and decisions is not great politics, but constant carping about having to pay the bills is not productive. Council should look forward to how they can improve the local community and help the ratepayers.
Former Seguin reeve