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Edmonton city council reduces proposed property tax increase to 6.6% from 7.09%

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Expect Edmonton property taxes to go up in 2024.

Between cuts to existing services and approval of new spending, Edmonton city council on Monday voted to reduce next year's proposed property tax increase by almost half a percentage point to 6.6 per cent from the proposed 7.09 per cent.

Council is expected on Tuesday to approve both the operating and capital budgets, and discuss and vote on two remaining proposed amendments, to officially make the reduction, which would also see lower property tax increases of 5.3 per cent in 2025 and 4.7 per cent in 2026.

Despite the cuts approved on Monday — including holding off on spending an $8-million dividend from Epcor, ending a $5-million planning grant for the A1 Athletic Facility in north Edmonton and requiring on-demand transit buses refuel at city-owned gas stations — council also approved $19 million in new spending, about $12 million of it for transit.

There is money to permanently redeploy the buses that were running along the Valley Line LRT route before it opened recently and add 50,000 new bus service hours.

Of the 19 proposed changes to the budget today, Mayor Amarjeet Sohi proposed 15 of them, including the transit spending.

"This investment not only allows us to look at some of the capacity issues, but the majority of this investment is actually going to go to our neighbourhoods that don’t have access to public transit at this time," Sohi said.

Along with the money for transit, city council approved close to $3 million to improve the response to homeless camps, well short of the almost-$14 million city staff estimate is needed to fully address the record number of complaints about them.

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