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Clarenville entertains new approach to engage residents' thoughts about 2020 budget

Clarenville council, front row, left to right: Coun. Keith Fillier, Mayor Frazer Russell and Deputy Mayor Heber Smith; and back: Coun. Paul Tilley, Coun. Bill Bailey, Coun. John Pickett and Coun. Rod Nicholl.
Clarenville council, front row, left to right: Coun. Keith Fillier, Mayor Frazer Russell and Deputy Mayor Heber Smith; and back: Coun. Paul Tilley, Coun. Bill Bailey, Coun. John Pickett and Coun. Rod Nicholl. - Jonathan Parsons
CLARENVILLE, N.L. —

The Town of Clarenville is busy this fall beginning its preparations for the 2020 budget.
At the Oct. 8, council meeting several committee reports discussed their actions ahead of the budget later this year.
New recreation committee chair Coun. Keith Fillier told council the committee plans to review and simplify the recreation user fee rate charts and ensure they reflect the services provided.
“We've got several facilities in our town, for example the Bill Davis Chalet or the stadium or the ballfield, that we rent out on a regular basis,” explained Fillier at the council meeting. “Over the years, where we’ve added or changed facilities, the list of rates hasn’t been consistent or updated.”
Recreation manager Brandon Reardon will compile these charts, along with additional research, for the committee’s review.
During the public works and planning committee meeting, the 2020 operating capital budget was discussed.
Director of external operations Rick Wells informed members attending the committee meeting if there were any items they wanted investigated or included for the budget, they should advise accordingly.
A draft of the public works budget is expected to be available for review around the middle or end of October.
Clarenville’s chief administrative officer David Harris reiterated the details to all councillors at the council meeting.
He said any suggestions are needed as soon as possible for the finance committee to start preparing budget numbers for council’s review.
Regarding a possible pre-budget consultation, as the town has done in past years, Harris told The Packet they’re looking for a different approach this year.
In order to combat low attendance numbers at these types of events, Harris says council is entertaining different ways for the public to make their opinion known, such as a survey-type process.
He says not many people have shown up or participated in the consultations in the recent past, despite trying new approaches like broadcasting the event on Facebook Live last year.
Residents who have opinions based on the upcoming 2020 municipal operating budget can contact the Town of Clarenville to provide 
suggestions.

Jonathan.parsons@thepacket.ca
Twitter: jejparsons

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