Charlottetown, PE – The Greater Charlottetown Area Chamber of Commerce welcomes the City of Charlottetown’s commitment to freeze parking rates until fall 2021. The City’s 2021-22 operating budget was released on Friday, March 26 and included a deferral in any increases in downtown parking rates until September 1, 2021. Together with Downtown Charlottetown Inc., the Chamber advocated for a freeze in hopes that by the fall the economic picture would be clearer for downtown businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“While we’re optimistic about the road to recovery for our downtown service businesses including retail and restaurants, we were concerned that the City’s plans to increase parking rates would be a deterrent for customers when there is still so much uncertainty about tourism visitation for the summer of 2021,” said Penny Walsh-McGuire, Chamber CEO. “The Chamber looks forward to regrouping with DCI and the City to discuss parking rates when we have a better understanding of our economic environment.”
In a pre-budget letter to the City’s Finance Chair, Jason Coady, the Chamber called for a freeze on commercial property tax rates to maintain some financial stability for Charlottetown businesses. The Chamber also requested a thorough review of the 2020 water and sewer utility rate recommendations which included implementing a long-term water and sewer financial plan, making records regarding water and sewer more accessible, and consulting with the business community in advance on proposed changes and explaining the rationale and potential impact. These recommendations were raised in 2019 when the City unexpectantly and significantly hiked water and sewer utility rates for residential and commercial customers.
The Chamber also noted the recent updating of the City of Charlottetown’s official plan, the first update in more than twenty years.
“New economic opportunities will be crucial for our City’s post-pandemic recovery and growth,” said Walsh-McGuire. “We look forward to working with City Hall in supporting Charlottetown businesses and our community.”
To view the City of Charlottetown’s 2021-22 Operating Budget, click here.
For more information, contact:
Policy and Communications Manager