Revised tax bylaw results in lower taxes

Chris Clegg
South Peace News
Most taxpayers in High Prairie will be paying less taxes this year.

Council announced a slight mill rate decrease at its May 9 meeting, only one week after announcing a slight increase.

Council passed a new tax levy bylaw after treasurer Terri Wiebe announced an error in calculations.

“This is a good news thing,” Wiebe told council.
“…it was discovered that the provincial grants in lieu properties had not been included in the calculation,” wrote Wiebe in her report.

As a result, $8 million in assessment revenue was not calculated. The assessment generated about $80,000 in municipal tax revenue.

In an ironic twist to the situation, the $80,000 was a similar amount that council was considering taking from reserves and/or surplus one week earlier. It was when Councillor Arlen Quartly proposed the idea of a rebate, which will no longer be needed.

“I’m pleased to see the town mill rate coming down,” said Mayor Linda Cox.

The 2017 municipal mill rate is set at 8.8649 mills; last year’s rate was 9.0250 mills, a decrease of 1.77 per cent.

The business, or non-residential tax rate, is set at 13.3513 mills; last year it was 13.5925 mills, also a decrease of 1.77 per cent.

Tax bills are calculated based on assessment. If property assessment rose on a resident’s property, the tax bill rises.

Overall tax bills will rise for most residents due to the increase in school requisitions, which council has no control over.

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