Mayor Val van den Broek opposed the majority of council on the tax increase. (Black Press file photo)

Langley City budget and tax increase approved

The council voted for a 6.98 per cent property tax increase

Langley City’s mayor opposed the majority of her council as they passed a budget with a 6.98 per cent property tax increase for 2019 on Monday.

Mayor Val van den Broek had pushed for some spending to be pushed off to mid-year to cut the tax increase to 5.24 per cent.

The increase in costs come from hiring new staff, including three firefighters, and City staff including a bylaw officer, and a recreation supervisor.

Surveys of residents had found concerns about homelessness and public safety issues, and some of the additional staff were aimed at addressing those concerns.

“Families are living pay cheque to pay cheque and the difference could be used for a phone bill or groceries,” van den Broek said as she asked her fellow councillors to amend the budget at the third reading stage last month.

However, the majority on council wanted to go ahead with the budget as planned.

In the end, van den Broek noted she didn’t agree with the budget, but voted for the five-year financial plan.

“Even though I don’t agree with this year’s [tax] increase, I will be voting in favour of this,” she said, noting she agreed with the overall five-year plan.

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