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When the new real estate assessment roll was published last fall, it was clear to us that property values in Mount Royal would continue to rise. This turned out to be accurate, and with the hit to residents’ wallets always in mind, the Town made sure to adjust its tax rates accordingly in the new budget for 2020. For a single-family home whose average value rose from $1,082,800 to $1,381,200—almost a 25% growth over three years—the tax bill increase does not exceed 1.85%.

The Town Council was pleased to adopt a $103.7 million budget this week. This budget demonstrates the usual rigour and reflects the tight, prudent and strategic management that has made Mount Royal so successful for so long. But this won’t be the only aspect of the budget familiar to you: due to their complex and long-term nature, many of the major projects initiated or continued in 2019 will remain relevant in 2020, including at budget level.

A perfect example: in 2019, the Town intensified the felling and replacement of many trees on public land to ensure the sustainability of its urban forest, particularly Norway maple trees reaching the end of their lives. Going forward, the overall goal is to vary the species to build the resilience of our vegetation cover. The task is on track, but it’s colossal. Though extraordinary, it will return in 2020. Mount Royal’s budget indeed reflects this.

The same applies to the implementation of the Réseau express métropolitain (REM). In 2020, once the Cornwall Bridge is demolished in our town centre and its reconstruction is underway, Mount Royal will focus on the new public space that will eventually cover the railway. It will serve as a new park for our municipality as well as a major pedestrian and cyclist corridor, and we want to invest the necessary time and resources to make it a success.

The Sports and Community Centre—a long-term project if there ever was one—is entirely in the hands of the community and for their benefit and will be the subject of a referendum on February 16, 2020. The referendum will ask a rather simple question: do Townies want to replace the current, long-outdated recreation centre with a new facility that meets current and future needs? If the answer is yes, we will be ready to deliver the goods. It’s in the budget!

I invite you to read the 2020 Mount Royal budget in full. It’s easily accessible on the Town’s website and you will see that, as always, the interests of our residents come first. Happy reading.

Philippe Roy

Mayor

90 Roosevelt Avenue

Mont-Royal H3R 1Z5