Tax hike approved for North Cowichan climate action plan

North Cowichan council approved a 0.5-per-cent tax hike to help fuel the Climate Action and Energy Plan.

A 0.5-per-cent tax hike will help fuel North Cowichan’s Climate Action and Energy Plan.

Mayor Jon Lefebure said the levy lift, which was approved by council April 10, will grow the plan’s reserve fund by about $112,000 this year, then rise each year thereafter.

The pool will be visited for various carbon-busting plans coming to councillors from municipal energy manager Peter Nilsen.

“Council hasn’t approved any projects yet,” Lefebure said of possible action on electric transportation, home heating options, low-emission ice-grooming gear at Fuller Lake Arena, and other ideas.

Council backed the tax boost as “a fair compromise” after staff reported a 0.6-per-cent growth from new business assessments.

“The majority of council saw the 0.5 per cent as respecting results of our (public) survey showing results were fairly evenly split,” said Lefebure.

Council will decide about dropping seed money into eco-projects if returns could shrink the municipal carbon footprint, he explained.