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Thursday, April 18, 2024
Home City Council New base tax passes first two readings at Monday’s meeting

New base tax passes first two readings at Monday’s meeting

New base tax passes first two readings at Monday’s meeting
Prince Albert City Hall (Herald File Photo)

City Council has agreed that a new base tax for properties is reasonable. 

First and Second readings of new tax bylaws have passed at Monday’s council meeting. A special meeting was scheduled for Monday at 5 p.m. for third reading. 

Included in the bylaws was the recommendation of a base property tax of $40, as well as a 1.8% mill rate in order to meet the expenses approved in the City’s 2022 budget.

Some members of Council spoke out against the proposal. Both Couns. Terra Lennox-Zepp and Charlene Miller believe a base tax to be a burden on those with fixed incomes. Instead, they support an increase in the mill rate. 

“The result of these base taxes is to shift taxation away from higher valued properties,” Lennox-Zepp said. “Lower and middle value properties will pay more under this.”

Mayor Greg Dionne said the base tax should be considered a “user pay” and that residents should pay for the services that everyone benefits from.

Protective services such as fire and police cost $1,800 per home, while close to 700 properties in the City pay far less than that in property tax. 

“You have to create some kind of middle field,” Coun. Don Cody said. “We have certain costs that everyone uses, no matter which corner of the community you are. You simply can’t continue on with the system the way it is.”

The previous base taxes of earlier years were replaced by special taxes, such as the Police Base Tax and the Roadways Base Tax. This ensures that the funds will only be used for these specific functions.

The Snow Management and Future Infrastructure Base Tax will no longer include infrastructure.