11/26/2014 11:13 EST | Updated 01/26/2015 05:59 EST

Montreal budget boosts taxes, cuts spending for 2015

Montreal residential property owners will see an average 1.8 per cent increase in their property taxes this year. 

The City of Montreal revealed its latest budget this morning and, for the first time since the central city was created, spending is down. 

Mayor Denis Coderre says he's keeping his promise of not raising taxes above the rate of inflation. 

For non-residential properties the average increase is two per cent. 

Plateau hardest hit by tax increases

Some property owners will see higher rate increases once you factor in additional taxes charged by boroughs.

Hardest hit will be the Plateau Mont-Royal borough, which will see an average increase of 4.5 per cent for residential properties.

In the Southwest borough, it's 4 per cent.

Côtes-des-Neiges-Notre-Dame-de-Grâce, LaSalle, Outremont, Rosemont-La-Petite-Patrie, Saint-Laurent and Villeray-St-Michel-Parc-Extension will all see average increases of two to three per cent.

L’île-Bizard-Sainte-Geneviève, Rivière-des-Prairies-Pointe-aux-Trembles and Saint-Leonard will see average increases of less than one per cent.

Spending down

The 2015 budget comes in at $4.88 billion dollars, down 0.3 per cent from last year. Budget documents refer to the effort to cut spending as "superhuman".

Most of the spending cuts will come from trimming the municipal workforce.

The city says it will abolish one of every two positions that becomes vacant over the next five years.

The city also says it hopes to save money with the eventual passing of the provincial pension reform bill for municipal workers, which will increase pension contributions for those workers.

The city estimates pension reform will save $49 million in 2015.

A noisy protest by municipal workers took place outside the city finance building where the budget was presented.

Spending up for STM, snow removal

The city will be increasing spending in some areas.

Transit spending is increasing, with $25 million more for the STM. That's a six per cent increase bringing the city's total contribution to $409 million.

The snow removal budget is up $4.5 million from 2014 to $155 million.

The fire department will see its budget increase $4.3 million to $360.5 million.

The city will also invest $73 million in improvements to Espace Pour La Vie, which includes the Biodome, Botanical Garden, Insectarium and the new Planetarium.

Tax increase breakdown by borough

- Ahuntsic-Cartierville: +1.9 %

- Anjou: +1.3%

- Côtes-des-Neiges-Notre-Dame-de-Grâce: +2.7%

- Lachine: +1.9%

- LaSalle : +2.9%

- L’île-Bizard-Sainte-Geneviève: +0.9%

- Mercier-Hochelaga-Maisonneuve: +1.6%

- Montréal-Nord: +0.5%

- Outremont: +2.8%

- Pierrefonds-Roxboro: +1.1%

- Plateau-Mont-Royal: +4.5%

- Rivière-des-Prairies-Pointe-aux-Trembles: +0.6%

- Rosemont-La-Petite-Patrie:  +3.0%

- Saint-Laurent: +2.9%

- Saint-Léonard: +0.9%

- Sud-Ouest: +4.0%

- Verdun: +1.8%

- Ville-Marie: +1.9%

- Villeray-Saint-Michel-Parc-Extension: +2.4%