LANDSCAPE ENHANCEMENT and APPRECIATION FUND (LEAF)
My office has been receiving many questions regarding the LEAF program. I want to make sure Edgemont residents are aware of LEAF and have the correct information on the timeline, what LEAF is, and if you have more questions contact me below OR at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What is LEAF?
The City of Calgary supports local improvements such as back lane paving and enhanced landscape maintenance. There are more than 12 communities that operate a landscape enhanced maintenance program. These community-based programs are paid for by every property owner in the community where the special tax has been approved by Council.
How did Edgemont LEAF start?
LEAF was brought forward by a group of Edgemont residents. The group has obtained the signatures of two-thirds of Edgemont residents in support of a special tax that amounts to $7 a month, for a total of $84 per year.
The wording on the document that residents signed?
The wording on the Edgemont LEAF petition, that residents used to gain two-thirds support, stated on the top:
“I approve an annual special levy of $84 per property to provide enhanced landscape maintenance to community entrance ways, boulevards, parks and green spaces as identified by the Edgemont Community Association.”
What if I am opposed to the LEAF program?
Edgemont residents can sign the opposing-LEAF petition, and it must obtain two-thirds of Edgemont residents signatures.
If the signatures for a special tax are achieved, and accepted by the City of Calgary, then opponents to the special tax have 120 days to collect two-thirds of community resident’s signatures who oppose the levy.
For Edgemont, the first week of March is the end date for the opponents of LEAF to fulfill the two-thirds opposing signatures required by the City. After that date has passed, if the requisite number of signatures is not achieved LEAF will go to Council for a vote. If an opposing petition with two-thirds of residents is collected by the first week of March, the levy is automatically cancelled and will not go to Council for a vote.
The public can speak for or against LEAF at the CPS Committee on Wednesday, April 06th 2016 . Each person is allowed 5 minutes to speak to the committee.
Where does your money go?
Council will review the proposed Special Tax Levy Bylaw in support of the Edgemont LEAF. If the bylaw is passed by Council, the special tax will then be added to the property tax bill of every property owner in Edgemont. The annual amount will be $84 or $7 per month for residents in the TIPP. The tax revenue will be transferred into a special reserve and administrated by Corporate Finance and Edgemont Community Association representatives.
The funds are only used for operating activities that align with the text of the original petition i.e. “I approve an annual special levy of $84 per property to provide enhanced landscape maintenance to community entrance ways, boulevards, parks and green spaces as identified by the Edgemont Community Association.”
Any additional work proposed by the community association will be vetted through Calgary Parks representatives.
Where I stand on LEAF?
I support Edgemont LEAF. I door knocked for LEAF and believe it is a worthwhile program. I am always in support of lowering taxes. However, LEAF was brought forward from a grassroots group who achieved the necessary signatures, and put considerable time and resources to achieve their goal. I will be supporting LEAF if it comes to Council. I have witnessed LEAF’s benefits firsthand in other communities.
I strive to represent every resident in Ward 4, and when the proponents and opponents came to me for information, I helped. While I am supporting LEAF I also support the opponent’s right to stop Edgemont LEAF from becoming approved – this is democracy at work. If the LEAF opposition does not achieve the necessary signatures by the first week of March, then Council will have the final vote.
Contact information for:
LEAF: The Edgemont Beautification Project
RECALL - NoFlower Tax
Contact My Office
City of Calgary – Info on Special Taxes
This content represents the personal views and opinions of the Ward Councillor and should not be taken as a statement of policy of The City of Calgary. The inclusion of any external content does not imply endorsement by The City of Calgary.