Timmins city council is now seeing the ripple effect from an earlier decision to snow plow two rural roads in town. Another request has come in, except it is for a tax rebate for a cottager in lieu of winter maintenance.
Councillor Pat Bamford says the city need to stop approving these requests immediately, and suggested the approval to plow Charland and Bertrand should be a one off. He says otherwise, it will cost the city significantly. He says this could mean any extra money might go into just maintaining rural roads; taking away funding for other programs.
Councillor Andre Grezla says this could be a slippery slope. He says if council agrees to this tax rebate, it opens up the door for more than just plowing services. He says cottagers could then come to council asking for a rebate because they don’t get something like waste management services.
City Treasurer Jim Howie says if the city does it for one property, they’ll have to do it for all. He also echoed Grzela’s thoughts about the door being opened for other requests. Howie mentioned Timmins Transit, saying there are a lot of taxpayers who don’t use the transit. So, he says they might start coming to the city asking for a rebate on that. As Howie says, it’s a similar argument.
Council agreed to get more information, like who currently owns the road, and hear a recommendation from city staff before decisions are made.