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Budget first priority for Interim CAO

Fort McMurray, AB, Canada / MIX 103.7
Budget first priority for Interim CAO

Annette Antoniak is being recognized as the RMWB’s interim CAO.

Antoniak is currently the CEO of the Regional Recreation Corporation, and has held a number of high-profile positions including stints as executive vice-president of Canada Place Corporation, president and CEO of the Pacific National Exhibition, president and CEO of the B.C. Olympic and Paralympic Games Secretariat as well as CAO of the City of Penticton.

Her new job won’t start off easy though, as a looming decision could be made about this year’s budget.

On the last day of budget talks, Councillor Lance Bussieres withdrew a motion that would see the operating budget decreased by 10 per cent, the same as the capital budget. The reason for dismissing his motion was to allow the new CAO, Antoniak, a chance to decide on the matter.

“I fully expect, to be working with the team here who are very dedicated at what they do, to look at different ways we can look at the budget in terms of efficiency and new ways of doing business,” said Antoniak.

The operating budget’s main expense is employee salaries. The proposed budget is $516 million, with salaries accounting for more than half, sitting at $267 million.

If Antoniak sees the decrease as something the municipality needs, the budget would need to be slashed by $51.6 million by this time next week in order for administration to present the final version of the 2017 budget to council.

“We certainly will be looking at the budget but I think we need to stay tuned for December 13 and the recommendation that will be coming forward at that time,” said Antoniak.

Besides the budget, the recovery effort, Bill 21, taxation matters and working together with stakeholders are key priorities she wants to she addressed and continued to be worked on in early 2017.

Antoniak will take over the role on December 7th from outgoing CAO Marcel Ulliac, who announced his retirement earlier this year.

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