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Public asked for input in development of 2018 budget

The timeline is set for the development of Castlegar’s 2018 budget and five-year plan, with opportunities for the public to weigh in on priorities at the outset, and later on the proposed finish product before it is adopted as law.

“For 2017, Council added a new line item into its budget. A communication budget line item was put forward to enhance and enable a culture of community engagement ,” said director of finance Andre Buss in a report to council. “Public engagement is not new to the City of Castlegar, but what is new is council’s desire to provide the public with greater opportunity to guide the important initiatives of the community. The city will work to create an organizational culture that values open and two-way communication in how it listens to citizens, plans projects and undertakes tasks.”

An open-house-style public meeting is slated for Oct. 26, from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at the Community Forum (across from City Hall) in which residents can share with city staff, mayor and council which objectives they, as taxpayers, feel should be a priority. They can also ask questions, voice concerns, and play an active role in determining the city’s financial priorities for the upcoming year.

After that, council will go through budget deliberations until into the New Year, and will present a draft budget document in mid-February 2018 for the public to discuss and upon which residents can provide feedback prior to the budget being finalized.

There will also be opportunity for residents to provide feedback online or at City Hall.

For more information, contact City Hall at 250-365-7227.