Homeowners in Richmond will pay an extra 2.98 per cent in property taxes next year.
City council formally approved the 2013 operating budget, which included the tax increase, one of the lowest in the Lower Mainland.
The rise — which includes one per cent being tucked away into the city’s reserves for future infrastructure — is identical to that for 2012.
City council's finance committee unanimously approved the budget last week, which calls for a $5 million increase in spending, needed to maintain services levels across Richmond.
The city's financial experts described next year's budget process as "challenging," given the costs of providing programs in a growing community.
“This is a very prudent budget that is very responsible in these uncertain economic times,” said Mayor Malcolm Brodie.
“We’ve managed to maintain our outstanding level of civic services and make some very minor adjustments to address important emerging needs, while keeping our property taxes among the lowest in the region.”
The tax increase also includes 1.39 per cent (to maintain the same level of service from 2012) and 0.23 (new pending for 2013).
The only new spending item in next year’s budget is $300,000 in additional funding toward fire vehicle replacement and $100,000 for the hiring of a full time childcare coordinator. Among other tasks, the new childcare coordinator will oversee opening of five new City-owned child care facilities set to open in Richmond over the next few years.
A breakdown on the municipal tax dollar shows that 20.6 cents goes to policing and another 15.1 cents to fire-rescue.
A further 6.5 cents goes to parks; 5.5 to roads and 4.8 to community centres and the Olympic oval.