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For the record, disappointment and dissatisfaction

Posted on October 26, 2021 by Maple Creek

Since our letter sent to the Town Council made news headlines, we felt it important to clarify a couple things.
As stated in our letter and the news article, we love it here in Maple Creek; the small-town atmosphere, family and friends and the people are great!
And we are very much in favour of seeing a new pool in Maple Creek, our concern is around public consultation for large community infrastructure projects that may require a long-term levy to the people.
As a former councillor myself I can certainly appreciate the challenges Town is facing balancing budgets and prioritizing infrastructure projects. And I would like to commend the members of council for their commitment in what is sometimes a thankless job.
A “total mismanagement of snow removal” is unfair to the folks who work hard to clear the streets and was added in my letter out of frustration about the tax increase. I do however believe 9 days in unacceptable to see at least one pass on the streets in our part of town.
Lastly, I would like to comment on the tax increase. The story in the Maple Creek news edition June 3, 2021 headline reads “Slight tax increase”. I think it’s fair to say this is more than a little misleading. There is a lot of information in the story about the increase in mill rates and reassessment, but nowhere does it say the residents of Maple Creek can expect a tax increase of X% on residential and X% on commercial property. Sorry, but I need to say it again where was the transparency? Our taxes went up by 15.4% and I’m sure everyone would like to know what the average increase was for both residential and commercial properties. Hopefully this information will be forthcoming, and the headlines can then read “HISTORICAL TAX INCREASE FOR RESIDENTS AND BUSINESS OWNERS IN MAPLE CREEK”.
I think it’s fair to say that when any business/company’s expenses exceed their revenue, they would closely examine how they are doing business (with the assistance of professionals is necessary), especially in the case of unprecedented tax increases.
If businesses or people leave our community because of huge tax increases it does not ensure “Maple Creek remains a great place to live, work and do business” Less businesses equals less jobs equals less tax revenue and dollars put back into our local economy. It’s a lose, lose, lose.
With all due respect,
Owen Genert
Maple Creek

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