City Council approves 2017 tax rates

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    City Council has set property tax rates for 2017, which will result in an average increase of $5.65 per month on the overall property tax bill for a typical single-family home in Lethbridge.

    The majority of funds collected each year through City of Lethbridge property taxes are used to provide important public services that help keep the community safe and improve quality of life. Some of these important services include police and fire protection, road maintenance, public transit, parks, libraries and arts and recreation facilities. In addition, a portion of property taxes also support provincial education and seniors housing.

    When residential property tax notices are mailed out on May 17, they will reflect an overall average increase of 2.5 per cent for a typical single-family home valued at $262,500. Multi-family properties will see an overall average increase of 2.3 per cent in 2017 while commercial and industrial properties will see an overall average increase of 2.4 per cent.

    “We know tax time brings questions from residents about how their property is assessed and how their tax rate is calculated,” said Mayor Chris Spearman. “The City strives to make sure Lethbridge residents are informed about their taxes and they have easy access to information on how the City of Lethbridge uses these funds to provide the vital services that make our city a safe, inviting place to live and do business.”

    City Council must set tax rates each year in a taxation bylaw, as required by Alberta’s Municipal Government Act. Sometimes there is a mistaken assumption that when property assessments increase or decrease, there is automatically a corresponding rise or drop in property taxes. This is not the case. Only sufficient taxes are levied to satisfy the previously approved budget requirements. This is done by adjusting the mill rate and then applying it to the current property assessment.

    Property tax payments can be made without penalty up to the end of business on Friday, June 30, 2016. Taxpayers can also receive an incentive discount by enrolling in the City’s convenient monthly Tax Installment Prepayment Plan (TIPP)

    More information is available with annual tax statements, from the Assessment and Taxation Department or on line at www.lethbridge.ca/taxes.

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