Sharp pencils and an eye to necessity are the cornerstones of a budget presentation to Timmins council Tuesday night by Chamber of Commerce president Nancy Mageau and VP Val Venneri.

Mageau acknowledged that trying to minimize any tax increase is complicated by energy and staff costs, over which council has no control.

“However, given the rising fiscal challenges faced by our local businesses,” she said, “we would again ask the council to be mindful of the need of the judicious use of taxpayers’ dollars and to consider the impact that each budget line item will have on the final rate.”

Mageau also asked that consideration be given to any projects that can be delayed.

 “Greater reduction would benefit the community through greater tax bills as much as it would benefit the council,” she suggested, “providing a buffer against unexpected mid-year costs, whether it’s a project overrun or property reassessments.”