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City Updates

Wednesday, February 7, 2007

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Written by Bre Walt

Besides the decrease in temperature, there has been a lot happening around Guelph. The next two weeks of this column will be devoted to brief city updates.

Turfgrass Institute

The province has decided, for now at least, not to sell the land on Victoria Road that is home to the Turfgrass Institute. When news came of the proposed sale early this year, community members and council got together to say that they wanted to be involved in the decision making process. Council had alternative uses for the adjacent lands home to the old Guelph-Wellington correctional institutions, aside from what they assumed the province would sell it for—residential use. The province has agreed to leave the land for now, at least until their lease with the city expires. For the next decade at least, this land will remain untouched.

City Budget Highlights

TAX INCREASE: 4.3 per cent tax increase (equal to $88 extra per year for the average homeowner)

TRANSIT FARE INCREASE: Council rejected Guelph Transit’s proposed 25-cent increase to $2.25 for cash fare and a 10-cent increase to $1.80 for adult bulk tickets.

MORE COPS: $478,650 for two new front-line officers and to address crimes such as property offences, Internet luring and child pornography.

TERMITE OFFICER: $65,000 for a full-time position to attack the city's termite problem, to be hired in May.

RECREATION FEE HIKE: Council rejected increases of between three and six per cent for recreation fees.

HOLIDAY BUS SERVICE: Guelph Transit will now run buses 365 days of the year, including extended service on New Year's Eve and Canada Day. Provincial gas tax money will fund the expansion.

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