Halton Hills and North Halton newspapers
`Creative' budgeting to reduce tax hike
Independent & Free Press (Georgetown, ON), 20 Sep 2006, p. 1

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`Creative' budgeting to reduce tax hike

CYNTHIA GAMBLE Staff Writer A new method of budgeting, which Halton Hills Chief Administrative Officer Dennis Perlin describes as more transparent to taxpayers, will result in a decrease of 1 per cent on the Town's projected 2007 tax increase. At a special afternoon meeting on Monday, budget committee, which includes all members of council, gave the go-ahead to staff to pursue a capital charge-back percentage amount while preparing the 2007 budget. Charge-back is method of accounting staff time and overhead spent on a specific construction project, and that cost will now be "charged" to the overall budget of that capital project-- the Town is using a flat rate percentage fee of 3% per project. It's a method of directly attributing the town costs of managing a capital project to its actual cost. That charge-back from the capital budget will be transferred to the operating budget. For example, a construction project valued at $100,000 will now be charged a three per cent charge-back ($3,000). So the construction project will now be $97,000 plus the $3,000 charge-back. "Indeed the taxpayers are already paying for that 3 per cent. It's hidden. It's hidden in the operating budget. What we're trying to start is a process of attributing the proper cost of every project to that project," said Perlin. "It is really to help the taxpayer understand what the true cost of a particular project is-- right now they don't get that understanding if they just look at the capital costs." See FOGAL, pg. 9

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20 Sep 2006
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Perlin, Dennis
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Town of Halton Hills
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`Creative' budgeting to reduce tax hike