Budget 2021: Recover and Be More Resilient

June 22nd Council agenda includes a report about process for creating the 2021 budget and provides perspective on the pressures ahead in terms of managing the finances of the Township.  Appropriately the report indicates that we may need to re-consider plans given the economic impact of COVID-19.  But I am somewhat shocked and am dismayed that one specific budget item should be singled as possibly needing to be re-evaluated:  climate change initiatives. I know that our world, our local economy, our personal “wealth” positions are very different today versus 2019; but one thing has not changed:  the climate emergency. Yes, for the moment greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions are down but it is only for the moment.  The “tools” to make it sustainable are no more in place than they were when we declared the emergency with a majority vote. (See here, page 5 of 7 for minutes of July 8,2019 Council meeting)  We need to have as our goal to build a more resilient post COVID-19 King Township.  It is folly to think that we can first “recover from the virus” and then have time to do climate change.

 

5 Responses to “ “Budget 2021: Recover and Be More Resilient”

  1. John Flys says:

    Hi Debbie
    I am surprised to hear King Township Council is considering
    DEfunding King Township’s Climate Initiative.
    The Climate Initiative is extremely relevant today and for the future.
    Consider King Township is a community where the 2015 median household income was $194,451!
    Is the few dollars saved in tax per individual property owner worth it?
    What is the value of our children’s’ future

    • Debbie says:

      Hello John,
      What you have said is what I interpreted from the staff report and for that reaason I did raise it at Council. After some discussion there was not agreement to re-affirm our commitment to climate change initiatives but there was not a decision to take any action in this manner at this point. Council did set new direction re: budget for 2021; specifically that the tax increase should be as close to zero as possible. (In the 2020 budget there was a forecast of a tax increase of 2.88 in 2021.) And it was confirmed loudly that all projects, programs for 2021 will be reviewed and choices presented re: cost reduction or cost increases. It will be very important to for public to get very engaged on this in the fall. There has been financial pain from the pandemic; but I strongly believe that we cannot delay dealing with the climate crisis.

  2. Angela Rose says:

    100% agreed – this is THE existential threat to all of us. The virus just beat it to the punch.

  3. Nancy Hookinson says:

    Keep up the fight to do our part to make the world a safer place regarding climate change. The insurance industry knows full well that climate change is costing them a lot. This is a priority. It will cost our future if we don’t take it seriously.

    • Debbie says:

      Nancy, thank you for your comments. See my response to Mr. Flys. It is very important that the public gets engaged with the 2021 budget process.

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