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City budget looks to be pandemic-proof

Growing assessment expected to help firm our bottom line
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The Civic Centre is pictured in this aerial photo. Zack Trunzo/Village Media

City councillors will be told next week that Sault Ste. Marie's municipal budget isn't expected to be adversely affected by COVID-19 in 2021.

Although it's difficult to predict our fiscal fitness through to year's end, Jacob Bruzas, the city's manager of finance, will say that $4.1 million in COVID-19 recovery funding, plus City Council's earlier decision to allocate up to $1.9 million from a tax stabilization reserve, will be enough to cover financial pressures posed by the pandemic.

Councillors will be told that net assessment growth was up 0.07 per cent in the first half of 2021, and the total number of building permits issued during the same period was up 8.89 per cent: 685 to date in 2021, compared to 629 this time last year.

Both those developments are expected to help firm up the city's bottom line. 

Bruzas will be presenting a second quarter financial report.

On one item of recent local interest, he will disclose that the city's legal department has spent $115,123 so far this year on purchased or contracted services, one third of $347,398 budgeted for all of 2021.

Last year, the legal department spent a total of $145,300 for purchased or contracted legal services.

Monday's City Council meeting will be livestreamed on SooToday starting at 4:30 p.m.