Council set the tax rate at its regular meeting this week, establishing a rate that will increase the municipal portion of the average property owner’s tax bill by about 4.94 per cent.
A decrease in the School Requisition this year, however, means that the net impact to the average homeowner will be about 1.55 per cent.
The residential tax rate is set at 7.0562, the multi-family residential rate is at 8.4821 and the non-residential rate is 12.2850. These rates will generate just over $20 million from properties within the city to balance the city’s $51.4 million budget for 2018. This budget is inclusive of all municipal expenditures and transfers.
The tax rate is a factor used per $1,000 of property value to determine the amount of taxes a property is required to pay for municipal services. Taxes are based on assessment, which means that a tax rate increase does not necessarily mean an increase in the amount of property taxes paid compared to previous years.
Last year, just under $19.5 million was generated from property taxes in the city to balance the 2017 budget, which was passed at just under $59.5 million.
“After $10 million in property tax revenue from ID 349 was taken from the city with minimal discussion and no warning, our council had a difficult task in creating a fair and balanced budget for this year,” Mayor Craig Copeland said. “The largest hit was to the city’s capital budget, which means that fewer projects will be done. But our council did the best with the situation as it was presented to us.”
Assessment values in Cold Lake dropped more compared to communities around the province, and so the School Requisition also dropped by about $385,000 to a total of just under $7 million. The School Requisition is not controlled by the city: It is set by the province and collected by the city through property tax notices. The money is transferred to the province when collected.
In total, assessment value in the city decreased by $108 million compared to the previous year. The city saw $18 million in growth, or new assessment, about 60 per cent of which was from residential properties.
Tax notices will be mailed by the end of the month with a June 30 due date.
The city’s capital and operational budgets are available online at www.coldlake.com. Information on historical tax rates and the municipal property taxes collected is in the city’s annual report, also available online.