Dawson City Council Pass Eight Million Dollar Operating Budget

    Dawson City Council passed their 2019 operating budget last week, which focused on waster and water infrastructure, a new 10-year capital plan, and money towards a new recreation complex.

    After recently passing an almost $8.1 million operating budget last week, Dawson City Mayor Wayne Potoroka says their new 2019 budget is fiscally sound and responsible.

    Among the investments in the new budget include money to new capital projects like the city's future waste diversion and recreations centre, funds for new city vehicles and generators, and a ten-year capital plan to distribute funds for future projects more evenly across city departments.

    Potoroka says a waste tax rate is also slightly increasing for residents to help keep more objects out of the city's landfill.

    "What precipitated this increase was that we're doing a much better job diverting recyclables out of the landfill, but there's a cost associated with that. You have to fill that stuff in bags or ship that stuff out of town. It all costs money. So, we're really happy it's not going into the landfill because the sooner that hole in the ground fills up, the sooner we're going to have to make a new one and decommission the old one."

    While Potoroka says waste is one primary focus for this years budget, a different payment system for how residents pay for water is also in the works down the road.

    "(Right now) If you're a household of one, or a household of eight, you're paying the same amount for your water. It doesn't encourage to reduce consumption at all when you just pay the same flat rate. We know reduce-consumption will be important in the coming years as the costs increase that are associated with a new water treatment plant.  We're going to have to meet a higher standard then we have before for a potable water quality. That means more filtration and more treatment, which means more cost."

    Other smaller investments include exterior painting to a local bank, and implementation of the town's trail management plan.

    Approximately 15000 people live in Dawson City in Northwestern Yukon.

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