Vaudreuil-Dorion on solid financial footing according to Mayor’s report
PHOTO BY JOHN JANTAK
Mayor Guy Pilon answers questions as the final mayor’s report on Vaudreuil-Dorion’s financial status for 2014 that was presented at the November 2, Monday evening council meeting indicates the town is in sound financial shape.
As municipalities across the province prepare their operating budgets that will determine what tax increases residents may face in 2016, Vaudreuil-Dorion presented its final mayor’s report on the city’s financial status for 2014 that indicates the town is in sound financial shape.
The report which was presented by the city’s director general Martin Houde noted that total revenues collected during 2014 amounted to $64,575,619 versus expenditures totaling $59,884,262, giving the city a surplus of $4,691,357.
Houde said part of the surplus was attributed to a refund of $730,000 from the Conseil Intermunicipale de Transport (CIT) Le Presqu’île, a notable increase in the valuation of new construction projects and a higher than anticipated refund from the provincial Ministry of Public Security for Sûreté du Québec police services.
Among the significant projects that were completed during 2015 as part of the city’s triennial development and infrastructure renewal program for 2015, 2016, and 2017at was the reconfiguration of Avenue St. Charles and the construction of two overpasses over Highway 40 at a cost of $15 million.
The city’s expansion and upgrading of its sewage, water filtration and purification plants also took a prominent role as part of the city’s infrastructure improvement plan, at a total cost of $80,000,000.
The report also noted that the mayor’s remuneration for 2015 was $94,958 and that each of the eight councillors received $24,652. The mayor also received $17,500 for his role on the Montreal Municipal Committee (MMC) and additional remuneration for his work on various local committees, including the MRC de Vaudreuil-Soulanges, Conseil intermunicipal de Transport (CIT) de la Presqu’île and Centre local de développement (CLD) de Vaudreuil-Soulanges.
Since the maximum for the mayor’s salary is capped at $101,783 from all sources related to his administrative duties, all additional stipends are deducted from the mayor’s salary.
For Guy Pilon, who is currently beginning the third year of his third consecutive mandate as mayor, the continuing investment into its infrastructure improvement plan began in 2006 when a private consulting firm was hired to study and determine what specific areas needed to be addressed.
As a result of the report that was submitted at the time, it was determined that the city’s water works facilities, including all connecting pipes and sewage systems particularly in the older areas of the city, needed upgrading.
In keeping with the recommendations outlined in the report, the city responded by continually upgrading its water system over the years to make sure it kept up to pace with the large amount of commercial, industrial and residential development over the past 10 years that has resulted in Vaudreuil-Dorion almost doubling its population to just under 40,000 residents.
For Pilon, it’s a balancing act of making sure expenditures don’t exceed income. “We are in a good position to achieve our goal without having to bring in a significant tax increase,” he said. “This is the proudest achievement that I and our councillors and administration have consistently made in the last 10 years.”
Pilon declined to give an indication of what kind of tax rate hike residents and businesses could face in 2016, saying the figures are still being crunched by the city’s treasury department. The city will present its 2016 operating during a special council meeting that will be scheduled sometime in December.