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GCC Release Statement on Guelph Infrastructure Tax

Web posted on December 05, 2016

Guelph, December 5, 2016: The Guelph Chamber of Commerce presented to Guelph City Council as part of the stakeholder engagement and public presentations process on the City Budget. A central objective of the Chamber's continued involvement in the municipal budget process is to ensure that municipal public finance decisions are made with a lens of sound financial principles that balance support for a community's range of services with a community's ability to pay and remain competitive as an investment and growth location.

As a means to achieve this the Chamber presented on how the introduction of several escalating taxes and fees at the same time place a significant burden on businesses and their ability to remain competitive.

"The City has made significant changes to both its water & waste fees and its approach to storm water fees. Both will have significant costs implications on industrial and commercial end users," says Kithio Mwanzia, President and CEO of the Guelph Chamber of Commerce. "The city must consider the cumulative burden that will be placed on businesses by matching these changes with an additional infrastructure tax this year, and how that will have an adverse impact on businesses ability to continue to grow and create jobs."

The Chamber focused on these key areas as part of its presentation:

  1. The need to take a balanced approach and consider the implications of the cumulative municipal cost burden that businesses face.
  2. The need to see what internal savings can be found and directed to infrastructure spending prior to imposing a new infrastructure tax.
  3. Recognition of the efforts of this year's proposed budget as being within the range of inflation.

"We look forward to working with the City and continuing to provide the voice of the business community as a means to bolster growth and opportunity for Guelph," concludes Mwanzia.