Yellowknife city councillors will begin public discussions on the new city budget this week.

The discussions will likely add to the steep learning curve for councillors — six of the eight at City Hall are new to the job.

The draft budget is the biggest the city has ever seen.

It proposes a modest increase of less than one per cent to property taxes. However, it also proposes a host of other increases to keep property taxes low.

User fees for many municipal services would increase, including a 13 per cent increase to the solid waste levy which is added to every water bill. It also proposes a four per cent increase to water fees and a 10 per cent jump in tipping fees at the dump.

Fee increases are also proposed for recreational facilities.

The most dramatic jump is in the debt the city will carry. Right now, it sits at less than $2 million. It will jump to more than $20 million to allow the city to fund more than $30 million in capital spending. The city already has some capital spending money in the bank. But it says the borrowing is necessary for urgent work on aging infrastructure.

The 361-page draft is available for public viewing on the city’s web site.

Council begins its public review Monday evening.