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North Cowichanians face 2.64% tax hike this year

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Owners of the average North Cowichan home, valued at about $326,000, will pay $37.80 more in taxes this year.

Council gave third reading to its 2014 budget last week, hiking taxes by 2.64%, slightly below its expected push to 3.05%.

Last year's tax uplift was 3.7%.

Mayor Jon Lefebure explained council used reserves to meet funding commitments, while keeping its 2014 tax jack below forecasted levels.

"We had some additional expenditures this year. One was a contribution to the Mount Prevost Fitness Circuit ($18,500) and another is an expense for municipal records keeping ($21,000).

"Because they're one-time expenses, we found money for them out of reserves. That takes them out of the tax realm."

Lefebure called North Cowichan's $44-million budget "progressive."

"We've added some funds in the budget to do some economic development work and an agricultural plan — each of them got $30,000 and will be very valuable."

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