Bracebridge’s $13 million share of the multi-use community centre will not increase your tax bill

Agatha Farmer

BRACEBRIDGE - On Nov 13 and 15 Bracebridge released updates regarding the construction and funding of the multi-use community centre.

In a Nov. 13 press release the town stated that

an application has been submitted for funding under the Community, Culture and Recreation Stream of the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program for the development of a new multi-use community centre (MUCC) to serve the citizens of Bracebridge and the other communities in Muskoka.

Bracebridge has applied for funding to the tune of $36 million for the $49.1 million project; $19.6 million is being asked of the feds and $16.4 million from the province. The town would be responsible to fund the remaining $13.1 million.

The town‘s director of finance, Stephen Rettie, said it has been proposed that the $13 million will be funded through a “mixture of discretionary reserves ($1,100,000) and fundraising, including sponsorship and naming rights (amount unknown), with the balance to be funded through external debt.”

“In preparation for this project, the Town has created approximately $12 million worth of debt servicing capacity within its existing annual budget that could be executed without an increase to the tax rate.  This annual allocation is currently funding a reserve that is earmarked for other major infrastructure projects, including the extension of Salmon Avenue,” he said.

Rettie expects fundraising to offset some of the expense and does not expect to use all of the debt capacity, however, is prepared to should it be required.

“Long story, short – the cost-share component will be funded without additional impact to the tax levy. There is also approximately $5 million in expenses that are ineligible under the funding program.  These costs are funded through development charges ($1,425,000) and other available reserves ($3,575,000),” Rettie said.

On Nov 15 the town confirmed that construction on the $4 million extension of Salmon Ave. is underway.

In a press release the town said “the extension of Salmon Avenue will provide access to the site of the new Multi-Use Community Centre (MUCC) as well as to the adjacent proposed commercial development.”

Salmon Avenue Extension - Town of Bracebridge

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