Here is the preview, in case you missed it.
To be honest, there isn’t much to say about this meeting. We spent the better part of 4 hours (after the closed session) listening to and watching the budget presentation, and then going over the budget documents in greater detail. Each Councillor asked multiple questions throughout the evening to clarify a number of items including what $12,000 would get us for new servers (two new servers, software licensing, upgraded software, etc), how machinery would/could be shared between the Public Works & Engineering department and Community Services (already happening and will continue to in order to avoid purchasing duplicate equipment), ensuring adding live streaming council meeting capabilities was included in the 2019 budget (it is!), and so on.
We had some discussion about the reserves, where they were at, where they ought to be, and so on. Lots of questions, and thankfully lots of thoughtful, thorough answers from staff.
Only one item was deferred to 2020 (and it could very well be deferred further), which was an environmental assessment on wastewater discharge in Arva. Such an EA would eventually lead to building a wastewater treatment plant in Arva and ending Middlesex Centre’s relationship with the City of London. Council asked staff to move that to 2020, and there generally doesn’t seem to be an appetite to make that EA happen anytime soon as the only justification would be to allow for further growth in Arva.
So, that’s that! I also answered a few emails during and immediately after the meeting from residents who had budget related questions. This is a bit of a no-no, but at the same time it allowed me to ask questions I hadn’t thought of, and immediately respond to the resident’s concern!