Property taxes will increase 1.5 per cent in Hamilton this year, or about $53 for the average household.

City council passed the 2014 tax operating budget on Wednesday, which means $53 on a home assessed at $275,700. That’s among the lowest of Ontario cities, Mayor Bob Bratina said.

“Council has made key investments in services like transit and our adult day programs, while also ensuring our reserves remain sustainable,” Bratina said in a statement.

The budget includes another $1.3 million for winter control after an unusually frigid, icy winter tapped out the city’s budget.

It also includes $290 million in capital infrastructure such as roads, transit and waterfront development.

This year also marks the last of four years of area rating, which sees some areas of the amalgamated city pay different tax rates based on the services they receive.

Other highlights from Wednesday’s council meeting:

  • Council approved giving the public 45 days to give feedback on a lobbyist registry, which would see lobbyists publicly disclose when they deal with city councillors. There was no debate. Council will vote on a registry in June. It will cost an estimated $50,000 to $100,000 to build it and $114,000 per year to maintain it.
  • Council approved a plan to use shipping containers to create mobile parks around the city.
  • Council voted to establish a plan of subdivision for the Freeman Industrial Park, Hamilton’s largest brownfield remediation project.

City council also voted against establishing a citizen panel to study future two-way street conversions in the lower city. Instead, councillors will examine how to pay for nine already-approved two-way street conversions, including Bold, Hess, Caroline and King William Streets.