Township Council Passes 2020 Budget, Moves To Electronic Meetings

A special meeting held by Township of Langley Council on Friday, March 27 saw further measures enacted to protect residents’ wellbeing and reduce financial hardship during the COVID-19 crisis.

The Township’s 2020 Budget was passed with a 2% tax increase, and the Council Procedure Bylaw was amended to allow Council meetings to be held electronically.

“In these unprecedented circumstances brought on by COVID-19, the priority of each and every Council member is the safety of our residents and employees,” said Mayor Jack Froese. “Having the authority to conduct our business remotely will ensure strict adhesion to the physical distancing measures required to flatten the curve of the virus’s spread while ensuring the necessary work of the Township is still conducted.”

Regular Council meetings and public hearings have been replaced with Special Council meetings which will be held as required, with Council members participating remotely.

To further reduce personal interaction, members of the public will no longer be able to attend meetings, but are encouraged to view the proceedings from home at tol.ca/councilagendas. Visit tol.ca/councilcalendar for upcoming Special Council meeting dates as they are scheduled.

Residents who would like to address Council are asked to do so via email, to help manage upcoming Council meetings and streamline content for essential priority items. All Council advisory committees are suspended until further notice.

“As we prepare for the circumstances before us, it is vital that we ensure the day-to-day services our residents rely on continue to be delivered,” Froese said. “By adopting this 2020 Budget, we are providing the funding our employees require to carry out that necessary work.”

Council was able to keep the tax increase low through internal borrowing and by postponing some projects.

In addition, to assist those who cannot pay their property taxes on time due to the COVID-19 virus impacting their income, the 10% penalty for late payment that is required through provincial legislation has been divided. A 1.75% penalty will be imposed on the first business day in July, the usual date of the penalty, and the balance of 8.25% for unpaid taxes will be levied on November 15.

“We know that these are challenging times and Township Council wants to do whatever it can to help reduce the economic hardship brought on by the pandemic,” Froese said.

For up-to-date information on the Township of Langley’s response to the COVID-19, along with links to websites with important COVID-19 information, visit tol.ca/COVID19 or call the recorded information line at 604-532-7599.

Media Inquiries:
For media inquiries on this or other Township of Langley topics, please submit your inquiry at tol.ca/mediainquiries.