December 15, 2020
County Council approves 2021 Business Plan & Budget
2021 Budget meets pressures now while positioning for future demands of the pandemic
Oxford County Council approved the 2021 Business Plans and Budget this week authorizing a general tax levy of $63.7 million, a 1.4% increase over 2020.
Under the County’s current tax policy, this means the homeowner of an average residential property valued at $271,277 will pay $996 in property tax for County services in 2021, about $6 less than last year.
The total budget of $272 million including revenues and reserves will fund:
- $66.3 million in maintenance and infrastructure projects, including a watermain extension in Woodstock, construction at the Tillsonburg and Drumbo wastewater treatment plants, and social housing building improvements;
- $442,000 in community grants to support social planning, economic development, small businesses, arts, immigration, physician recruitment, youth initiatives, the Agricultural Award of Excellence and Tillsonburg Airport. This marks a 35.4% increase over 2020 and is meant to address growing social and economic pressures under the pandemic; and
- the County’s share of funding for Southwestern Public Health ($2.3 million) and local conservation authorities ($1.7 million).
During budget deliberations Council passed motions to increase the community grant for Social Planning Council Oxford from $55,000 to $65,000; fund Tillsonburg Airport by an additional $20,000 for a total of $50,000; and contribute 2% of the 2021 and 2022 levies to a special reserve for future broadband expansion in underserved rural areas.
The County budget also includes special levies of $4 million for Oxford County Library and $95,088 for court security costs in all municipalities except Woodstock, which funds these services through its own budget.
More information on the County budget, including presentations to Council from each of the three special budget meetings, is available at www.oxfordcounty.ca/budget.
2021 Community Grants
Oxford Creative Connections $60,000
Social Planning Council Oxford 65,000
Agricultural Award of Excellence 2,000
Oxford Connection-Economic Development 50,000
Oxford County Physician recruitment 30,000
Tillsonburg Airport 50,000
Small Business Centre 50,000
Youth Initiatives: International Student
Exchange ISE–Ontario ($8,000) and
Unassigned ($7,000) 15,000
North Oxford Intercommunity Bus Transit 120,000
Total Community Grants $442,000
Warden Larry Martin, Oxford County
“The 2021 budget addresses a number of Council’s priorities during these exceptional times: maintaining essential infrastructure over the long term; supporting those who support vulnerable people in our community; and securing our economy through stimulus funding, transportation links, and high-speed internet service that allows rural communities to fully participate in a world even more dependent on technology during the pandemic.”
Michael Duben, CAO, Oxford County
“The County has brought forward a responsible budget that addresses pressing needs in our community now, while preserving our financial strength and flexibility to meet whatever future pressures may be exerted by the pandemic. Our focus throughout the budget planning process has been on how we can support our area municipalities and community partners and, through that, the people of Oxford County.”
About Oxford County
Located in the heart of southwestern Ontario at the crossroads of Highways 401 and 403, Oxford County has a population of approximately 121,000 people across eight area municipalities that are “growing stronger together.” As a partnership-oriented, two-tier municipal government, Oxford County is emerging as a leader in sustainable growth through the Future Oxford Community Sustainability Plan and County Council’s commitment to achieving 100% renewable energy, becoming a zero waste community and working towards zero poverty. Situated in one of Ontario’s richest areas for farmland, agriculture is a key industry that is driving innovation in sustainable industries and diversifying the local economy. Oxford County offers a thriving local arts, culture and culinary community, as well as conservation parks, natural areas and more than 100 kilometres of scenic trails. The Oxford County Administration Building is located in Woodstock, Ontario. Visit www.oxfordcounty.ca or follow our social media sites at www.oxfordcounty.ca/social. Oxford County’s Strategic Plan is at oxfordcounty.ca/strategicplan.
Donna Kemp | Strategic Communication & Engagement
519.539.9800, ext. 3158 | firstname.lastname@example.org