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Bridgewater passes budget

By Evan Taylor Apr 11, 2024 | 2:17 PM

Bridgewater Council chambers. Photo: Evan Taylor

Bridgewater Town Council passed the 2024/25 budget, maintaining the tax rates for both residential and commercial properties, as well as the base residential sewer rate. The tax rate remains around the average for urban municipalities across Nova Scotia.

In total, the town is projecting a budget of  $32,020,535 which represents a 10 per cent increase from 2023/24.

Mayor David Mitchell highlighted the significance of addressing wastewater challenges, stating, “It’s the only way to address the problem and facilitate continued development of new housing units, including much-needed affordable housing and something we cannot ‘put off’ for another day.”

A substantial portion of the budget, totaling $8.36 million, is allocated for wastewater infrastructure projects. This investment reflects the town’s need to upgrade the system as it has proved to be a limiting factor for some development projects.

Additionally, approximately $1 million is earmarked for road maintenance, with Empire Street from York to Hillcrest slated for paving. This initiative aims to enhance road safety and improve overall infrastructure in the community.

Community investments remain a priority, with over $200,000 allocated to support local non-profit organizations. Playground improvements are also planned, enhancing recreational opportunities for residents of all ages.

Furthermore, infrastructure improvements are planned to address traffic congestion, with funds allocated for the redesign of the LaHave Street and Aberdeen Road intersection. This project aims to improve traffic flow and enhance safety for motorists and pedestrians alike.

Despite financial challenges such as inflation and increased project costs, the town prioritized maintaining service levels while addressing critical infrastructure needs. Mayor Mitchell expressed gratitude to town staff and council for their dedication and hard work in developing a balanced budget that meets the needs of the community.

He concluded by thanking residents for their input and engagement throughout the budget process, emphasizing the importance of collaboration in building a stronger and more resilient Bridgewater.