Photo: Council discusses mill rates at Monday’s Committee of the Whole meeting – (L-R) Mayor Bruce Lantz, Councilor Lori Ackerman and Councilor Larry Evans – Christine Rumleskie/Energeticcity.ca
By Christine Rumleskie
A brief Committee of the Whole meeting on Monday ended with a decision to keep the City’s tax ratios the same as in 2009.
After proposing to increase the mill rate by approximately 2.5%, the City needed to figure out how the taxes were going to be collected by each taxpayer.
Since property owners saw an increase in their assessments this year, the City decided to keep the tax ratios the same.
This is Mayor Bruce Lantz…
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Council deliberated whether or not the City should shift more of the tax burden onto business owners, but Councilor Trevor Bolin says that wouldn’t be a wise idea.
He explained that even though businesses could recoup the costs through price increases, it’s the consumer who will still have to pay the price.
In 2009, businesses paid 2.85 times as much as residential properties, and so that ratio will remain unchanged for 2010.
Director of Finance Laura Sanders says the final mill rate still isn’t set in stone, and it could fluctuate depending on the final assessment numbers that are due out next week.
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Earlier this year, the City discovered that it would need to generate more revenue to fund things like extra staffing costs and the operation of the Enerplex.
The City decided to bring in the extra funding partly through a tax hike of around 2.5%, and partly by dipping into the Fair Share funds.
It’s believed that each percentage point added or subtracted from the mill rate would influence the city’s revenue by roughly $185,000.
The City will transfer $705,000, or 4.97%, from the Fair Share agreement into the operating budget. The remaining $13.4 million will be earmarked for Capital Works.
If the 2.5% tax hike is approved, the City’s tax rates will look like this:
Residential land – 5.0463
Utilities – 40.0000
Major Industrial – 25.6304
Light Industrial – 28.1934
Business – 14.3684
Recreational – 10.6422
Farm – 13.8996