Determining budget priorities in Mission

Results of It's Your Business budget survey expected end of month

Mission council will soon have another tool to consider when they decide next year’s municipal budget.

The month-long It’s Your Business survey, put together by the district to engage the community in the process, has now closed and the feedback is being analyzed.

It’s too soon to tell what the top priorities are, said Jennifer Kinneman, Mission’s manager of civic engagement, who plans to have the results ready for council at the Sept. 25 meeting.

More than 600 residents participated in the survey, which ran from Aug. 1 to Aug. 31.

“I’m not sure what we were expecting,” said Kinneman, noting this is the first time the district has engaged the public through a budget survey. “Given this was our first attempt, we had nothing to compare it to.”

Some people who filled out the survey were very thoughtful in they responses and council can read all the comments in an upcoming staff report, Kinneman added.

Council has set a zero per cent tax increase for 2014, and wanted to hear from the public about which services and programs should be considered a priority.

Last year the district only heard from 29 people about the budget.

If you’ve missed the survey, there is still an opportunity for you to let council know your thoughts at the official public consultation meeting in November.

“They can still provide written comment or come out to the meeting,” said Kinneman. “There are plenty of ways to get involved still.”

Another way to to visit the Ask the Taxman section of the It’s Your Business page on district’s website, www.mission.ca. Residents can pose questions about the budget or budget process and someone from the finance department will respond.